Homestead Happenings Vol. 09

“The greatest fine art of the future will be the making of a comfortable living from a small piece of land.” ~Abraham Lincoln

Outside my window

Green everywhere! I’m like Mortimer the Mouse reveling in the lush, green growth all around me! It’s been exceptionally hot for the months of April and May. But I spend much time peering out the kitchen window so I’m thrilled the trees have leaved out. I’ve really enjoyed potting annuals all around the property for a burst of color.

On Pasture

Most of the animals are rotating throughout the pastures now. The sheep have been ornery so Mike has been working on solving fence problems (always). In the near future our egg layers will have a new home in our soon to be created mobile coops. This will get them out of a static coop and yard and out onto pasture, able to rotate with the other animals. Chickens are great for coming in behind other species to break up the parasite cycles and manure cleanup. The hogs are growing nicely and I enjoy them near the house. Not the smell of course, but their cuteness.

In the Garden

If you would have asked me a few days ago how my garden is growing, you would have gotten an ear full of “whoa is me”. But that’s the miraculous beauty of a garden, it follows no man’s time table. And so ask me now and you’ll hear that it’s my favorite place to be on the whole property! I’m smitten with the layout and loving all the growth. Mike and the kids put together a ‘Children’s CSA’ area with each child receiving a raised garden bed. It’s absolutely adorable how each has chosen to plant and tend his or hers. I’ve been focusing my energy covering up any and all beds with spent straw or hay to hold in moisture and suppress baby weeds. A good ground cover just hides all the flaws and makes beds look so fresh. We began our sunflower fort which I hope turns out. My fear is that even if it does grow tall and thick, the bees will be loving it, which means my kids will not! But it’s a fun addition to the potager. And lastly, we must get most of the seedlings out of the greenhouse and into the garden before they die of suffocation in there! It’s so hot.

In the Kitchen

I can’t say I’m enjoying my kitchen time as of late. I just want to live in the garden! Combine that with high temps and we’ve been doing a lot of ‘on the fly’ lunches like cheese and crackers or popcorn and smoothies. We did begin using the stove out in the summer kitchen which is an incredible blessing to still have some real meals despite the temperature. I absolutely cannot turn on the stove or oven inside or else it’ll make the home very uncomfortable. I’d be thrilled if we were grilling every night but we are still kind of in our meat fast because I refuse to buy much meat. June can’t come fast enough!

Homeschool of Life

We have our eye on the finish line of the end of school year. Of course learning never ends, but the demands of ‘bookwork’ learning do. Memorial Day weekend starts the summer activities. With that in mind, we are hustling to finish math books. Most of the kids will be working throughout some of the summer but that’s okay.

What we are learning

So much! Last week we opened our home to a church ministry and we had our first barn party! I need to get better at the art of hospitality. But it was a great night. Also, this week I’ve been all about the essential oils so I’ve been watching videos about the benefits and uses for my family.

Highlight of the week

It’s a tie between hosting our barn party and then spending every other minute in the gardens!
God bless you this weekend,

Angela

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