Homestead Happenings Vol. 02

Outside my window

The gray skies and muddy, brown earth have left me yet again, somewhat, uninspired. This weeks temperatures have fluctuated from sunny and 50 degrees to snow storms with no visibility. I guess that’s why they say March is “in like a lion, out like a lamb”. I do love that the animals don’t seem to mind so the chickens are free ranging in the yard and the sheep are enjoying grazing on grass. I never tire of seeing the animals out my windows.

On Pasture

Despite last week’s fiasco, we did attempt to move the pigs one more time in a brilliant fashion so they could till up another garden bed. They stayed put for a whole 24 hours before busting loose. I received the call from our neighbor. I will say, the children and I handled it wonderfully. We had learned from our previous loss against the pigs just how to keep them better contained and accept their “pigginess”. In no time flat, with the help of our neighbors, we had three pigs in their second home, and two had voluntarily gone to the barn in their first home. Phew!! That could have been bad with Mike not home. If they’d have crossed the street we may have had to cut our losses. Mike has been moving the cows daily back and forth from their barn area to the tippy top hill where some round bales are. However, Ginger is due to calve in the next couple of weeks! So we decided it’s best to keep her close to us and we can keep watch on her and feed her the good hay down here.

In the Garden

The pigs tilled up another large section that’s about 200 square feet. It only took them one day so I am not too worried about planting into their “fertilizer” left behind. We also added to our seedling shelves the following: cabbage, broccoli, jalapenos, cayenne, Hungarian wax, and bell peppers. And lastly, my dad braved the frigid temps to come make progress on our greenhouse! Mike poured some concrete so the base was set and sturdy. Now the frame is on the base. Baby steps.

In the Kitchen

Never in my life have my freezers been so low on meat. It just kind of happened. We have nothing but a few roasts left from a whole cow we put in the freezer a year and a half ago. We are totally out of chicken. We have a dozen or so goat chops, which really, what can I do with those to feed all these mouths? I wish they were ground. I realize that most people just head to the grocery store when they need something, but my challenge until we harvest our chickens, lamb, and pigs: Eat Less Meat. This week I cooked a large pot of lentil soup and a huge batch of stir fried rice. And we can’t forget the good old frugal pasta meal for filling bellies!

Homeschool of Life

Planning takes me so long. It’s just where I am in life with many little ones. I get about 20 minutes a day to focus on something. So this week I used that time to plan three months of Five In A Row. It’s a wonderful literature based program that is conducive to mom and children reading the same book daily for a week as a jumping off point for discussing geography, language arts, science, etc. The books I chose are Warm As Wool, Miss Rumphius, and The Tale of Peter Rabbit.

What we are learning

This isn’t a new concept, but this week I am giving myself permission to embrace the chaos and moodiness that come from long, cold days. We are a bit cooped up and that means lots of messy crafts, movie watching sessions, fighting over board games, extra snacks and the like…

Highlight of the week

We are enjoying the aroma of maple sap reducing on the stove! I am surprised how much sap the one maple tree is giving us. I may even save some sap for “sap water” which everyone is talking about. Refreshing, mineral rich, and free.

Happy Weekend,

Angela

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