Sunday, June 26, 2011

Cider Press

A couple of days ago we picked up a new (used-new to us) cider press. It was given to us as a wedding gift. We're really excited about it. Got a great price on it.

Speaking of great prices. Since I got laid off, we've been living in a little bit of financial denial. Well, yesterday we started really working some good old fashioned frugality. Got rid of one cell phone line. Cancelled the home satellite internet in favor of surfing at the library or coffee shop in town. Decided to make and bring all of our food for backpacking from home. No fancy freeze dried meals for us.

"Simplify, simplify" "A man is rich in proportion to the number of things he can let alone." - Henry David Thoreau

Friday, June 24, 2011

No more new animals...

No more new animals until Whisper has her kids. Except for this Labrador Retriever we rescued from the shelter. She is only six weeks old and is completely adorable. She and Oberon are (more or less) getting along. They sleep together anyway. Her name is Titania.

Speaking of baby animals. Whisper is very, very pregnant and should be kidding within a week or two.

Hopefully she will wait until after I return from a backpacking/fly-fishing trip I'm taking with the boys. We are going up to a place called Kelly Creek to spend a few days. We plan on hiking in a few miles, setting up a camp, and doing some fishing. If the water is low enough, which is a bit dicey this early in the summer, the fishing is usually great. I can't wait. It'll also give Jenny a few days off from parenting.

The garden is booming along. We grew enough radishes to do the farmer's market, but the lettuce that was supposed to go along with it got eaten by the chickens. So, we have hundreds and hundreds of radishes that are getting ready to bolt and go "woody." I guess you can't complain about having too much food, although it's hard to do too much with a zillion radishes.

The good Lord has blessed us with a beautiful garden this year. We are enjoying it's bounty. We are truly, truly blessed.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Birth Class!

Oh my, spent all weekend in a Bradley Method birthing class. It's really starting to sink in that Jenny is pregnant. We spent the whole weekend talking about birth and babies. We covered a lot of topics in sort of a whirlwind. We will be having a natural home birth. It sounds like an amazing experience.

Came home late this afternoon and got some squash and tomatoes planted. The weeds are taking over, so it's time to spend a few days weeding, mulching, and fertilizing. We have a ton of stuff growing in the garden but with the weeds an general disorganization it looks pretty ramshackle.

We will be having over a hundred children and their parents over to tour the farm and learn about "where food comes from." They are coming from the Methodist Vacation Bible School. Pretty cool, but a little scary.

Well, it's off to say bedtime prayers with Jenny and then I'll probably spend a little more time housecleaning. Blessings,

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Craig Mountain

I went on a solo hiking/scouting trip in the Craig Mountains yesterday. This is the area where I hope to be elk hunting this year. It is a roadless/non-motorized area in which only foot and horseback travel are permitted. I will be hiking or backpacking into the area to hunt.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

The puppy has landed

We picked up our new puppy on Monday! His name is Oberon and he is a German Short-Haired Pointer. He should make a great bird dog. Believe it or not we located a pure-bred Labrador Retriever at the pound too. We'll be picking up that puppy in a few weeks. They'll have each other to chew on and maybe they won't eat quite so many shoes.

We got him into a real pheasant wing today from a bird I shot last season. He really enjoyed playing with that. I'm going to start breaking him to gunfire as soon as I can pick up some .22 blanks. He's showing some great instincts already. He will "point" song birds an chickens. As always, keeping him away from the chickens may be a problem.

I'm bringing Caspian, the goat, in to the vet school (it's practically free) today. Maybe we can get a better idea of what's wrong with his ankles. I'm worried about him. I would be heartbroken if there was nothing we could do for him.

I think I may make a little cheese today. And we are making sausage on Friday. Probably feta cheese today and just bulk venison/pork breakfast links on Friday.

The weather continues to be a gardening challenge. It's also a challenge for everybody's patience as well. We are having the barn restoration day on Saturday. My friend Jason and I poured some concrete footings today. We are going to jack up the barn a couple of inches, put down the footings and brace the foundation with 4x6 beams. Of course we will be cooking up a big farm lunch and dinner for folks who show up to help. What a blessing it is to have such good friends and community.

Life is so wonderful. I am just amazed at how beautifully things are going. I just feel so blessed that I want to keep thanking God every chance I get. We are truly blessed.