Saturday, January 31, 2009

Cute Babies

These adorable Labrador babies belong to some friends of ours. The parents of this litter are dogs that have come from our kennel. The sire is from some of our older stock we had, and the dam was out of our Quackers.

(A black puppy)

These babies were part of an accidental breeding. Our friends had done a great job in the past keeping the two separate during these delicate times, but this time love prevailed.

Unfortunately the dam died when the litter was only a week old due to an unforeseen health complication. Our friends had the very hard job of hand feeding these eight little ones, but they did a great job, and raised all the puppies.

(A yellow puppy)

These little ones are now 7 to 8 weeks old and are ready for new forever homes. They have had their first shot and have been dewormed several times. They have been well socialized with lots of different people.

(A chocolate puppy)

However they are not AKC registered. Both parents were able to be registered but our friends never sent in the paper work because they didn't ever plan on babies. So these guys are 100% purebred but again not registerable.

Our friends are asking a small fee to place the pups in a great home to help offset the cost of shots worming and food bills. If anyone knows of someone looking for a great lab pup at a great price leave a comment and I'll get you more info on these adorable little guys.

Friday, January 30, 2009

Furry Friends Friday with more feathers

I have mentioned my turkeys several times lately. So here they are my babies Bob and Tom. My husband named them after his favorite morning radio talk show. I figured I should let him name them since I bought them on a whim one day while

he was sleeping. I saw an add in the paper and called from the parking lot of the grocery store. The lady said come on out so I did. I had a dog crate in the back of the truck so we loaded them up. I just love them. They are pets only. Other than the cat they are our only critters that don't have a distinct function on the farm. I always thought it would be neat to have a big tom strutting around. However these to don't hardly strut at all, and I can't turn them loose cause I don't think they would come back. They are a little skittish, but you can pet them. I do love to hear them gobble. My husband an expert turkey caller can get them going every time. I love these guys and hope someday to get more with some different coloring.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Snow Day Part 3

Well after my last post I did go shovel my driveway. I sure am glad it isn't very long cause it sure is wide. Actually I kind of had fun doing it, I must be delirious from all the snow. After the driveway I fed the critters, made dinner, then settled into making cookies with my kids. (see photo one)We were half way through baking a huge batch of chocolate chip cookies went out went the power. I was hoping we would be missed by the power outages this time, but I should really know better by now.

Well my kids tend to feakout when the power goes off. My daughter worries about every little thing. Mommy what if this and this happen. My son feeds off her emotions and goes into crazy run through the house like a wild man mode. I am trying to stay calm so as not to feed their energy with out killing them. So I pulled my cookies out of the oven thankfully they were done. I put the remaining dough in a bowl and stuck it in the freezer for a later date. I did my dishes before the water heater lost all its hot water and settled in on the couch with my hubby. The kids finally chilled out and snuggled with us. It was kind of nice.

My husband called the power company they said there were 100 homes in Hillsborro without power. He didn't think that was too many so he decided to wait to build a fire thinking they would get to us soon. At bed time I asked if we should stay up and build a fire even though I was so sleepy. He said no so off to bed we went with lots of blankets.

We woke up to still no electricity, so we snuggled under the covers with the kids till it got daylight. Once we could see what we were doing I layered the kids in long johns and sweatsuits, and headed downstairs. It was bananas, cereal and peanut butter sandwiches for breakfast. I got to work cleaning out the fridge. I placed all the freezer stuff in our big deep freeze in the garage. luckily it all fit, cause it is full to the top. I put all the fridge stuff in stryofoam coolers that I have brought home from the office( we get vaccines in them) I then put ice packs in the coolers, my fridge thermometer inside and packed snow around it. (photo 2) Everything stayed very cold. While I was doing this my husband was carrying in arm load after arm load of firewood and getting a roaring fire going. It was 57 degrees in the house when we woke up and it quickly rose to 64 degrees. We were quite comfortable. I headed out to feed the critters after that was done I told my husband that I thought I had things under control so off to the office he went.
I spent the morning organizing all of our magazine racks, while the kids played puzzles and games. At lunch time I heated some food in the camp cooker(see photo3). It is very handy. You put your food inside and hold it into the fire place to cook your food. It has a very long handle. The object next to it in the photo is for roasting marshmallows or hotdogs. Nice tools to have around. Anyway one of the things I heated up was so left over gingered carrots. My son took one bite and gagged and vomited up part of his lunch. At least he wasn't sitting on the carpet. So as I cleaned him up the electricity came back on. Yeah! It stayed on for a little over an hour. In that time the heater rose the house temperature to 68, but I didn't let the fire go out just yet. I did my dishes and washed my son's pukey clothes then settled into blog. I was almost finished with this blog when the power went out again. Glad I still had the fire going.
I could see the downed power line laying in my bean field so I called it in. The recording said they hoped to have 90% of people restored by midnight and the rest the next day. I figured I was low on the totum pole now so I settled in for another night of no power. I was so proud of myself I was able to keep the house at 67 degrees. It was almost hot near the fireplace. I carried in more wood and fed the critters before dark. My husband stopped by a local restaurant for us and brought home a nice hot dinner. It was nice to eat by oil lamp light. We settled in on the couch and the kids played by the fireplace (photo 4). It was a fun time. I had noticed and AEP truck sitting in my neighbors drive for the past 4 hours so I figured they were waiting on a lift truck to come and sure enough it did around 8:30pm power was restored. I was surprised it was so soon. I was little disappointed I was having a good time with my family with no T.V. video games ect. to distract us. Something we should do more often. The ice and snow storm of 2009 was actually fun, but I am grateful for power.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Snow Day Part 2

After our 6 inches of snow yesterday we woke to at least a quarter inch of ice if not more. After contemplating whether or not we should try the roads we decided to head off to work. My husband would have to take a vacation day if he wanted to stay home, and I knew I was supposed to have a surgery and that I was the only person there in the afternoon. So we bundled the kids warmed up the truck and off we went. The hardest part was trying to get the kids into my mom's house with 6 inches of icy snow crunching beneath our feet.

Well we made it there and started off to work. The roads were not great but they were not the worst we have seen and with little traffic we were making good time. We were still a little behind though so when we reached williamsburg, that is well over half way to my office I called in to let them know I would be there in about 15 more minutes not to worry. My boss tells me oh I am closing the office turn around and go home. I am not too thrilled at this point since I have drug out my kids and wasted my gas. So My husband calls in for the day and we turn around. When I get home I have a message on the machine to call the office. Wish they would have made that decision at 8am when we opened and before I had left the house instead of at 8:43.

Anyway we snuggled in and made so soup and later we are going to make cookies. We cuddled on the couch and watched Wall-E. Kids wanted to play out but with the crunchy ice it is just not going to happen. Now I guess I need to go shovel the driveway for the second time since the snow plow just plowed it shut.

Hello it is snowing go inside crazy dogs!

Awesome Icicles!

The only farm casualty was the netting on top of the turkey pen. It is rated to hold 35lbs. But the ice alone exceeded that. Then the ice made the holes too small for the snow to fall through so it was hopeless. We had to catch the turkeys which really wasn't as bad as I thought it was going to be then we put them in the chicken coop till we can fix the netting. Let me tell you turkeys are very strong.

Of course my rabbit decided to have her babies on the nastiest night of the year. I am happy to report we have 8 babies and all are doing well so far. It is really hard to keep them alive in this weather. Thank god for barns, dog crates, and lots of hay. Isn't it cute all naked.

What's Cooking Wednesday

This is broiled smelt, a small fish something like a sardine, but not quite as offensive. I placed them on a baking sheet and topped them with Thyme and shredded parmesan cheese and broiled them for 6-8 minutes.
The potatoes are red potatoes quartered and boiled with a little melted butter and oregano sprinkled on them.
The veggies are a blend of frozen veggies from meijers. The is broccoli, carrots, and juliened beans I added and citrus grill seasoning to the veggies and they were very good.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Snow Day

This was what our road looked like this morning at around 7:30 am. Needless to say the kids were off school. I was lucky it was my off day so I got to stay put, but my poor husband had to trek off to work. Thank god for our old 4 wheel drive pick up. We would be stranded with out it. Of course after freezing myself feeding the animals this morning all I really wanted to do was curl up in the house and stay warm, but the kids were dying to get out in all that snow. I held them off till after lunch time, hoping to wear them out for nap time.

My Little Snow Angels.

We went for a nature hike, but saw nothing but snow. We had a great time. Here we are crossing what is left of the creek.

We walked thru the small woods behind our house via the goat trail to the bean field. It sure is a huge field. I think it looks so beautiful with all the perfect snow. In just a few seconds it will be covered with foot prints from my little ones crashing through all the snow. What a pity I love untouched snow.

Here they go!

I wanted to do some sledding when we got back to the house, we have the perfect hill, but neither one of the kids wanted to. Instead my son thought a frisbee appropriate for this weather.

here my daughter in the background is piling up snow for an igloo and my son is trying to push his dump truck and frisbee through the snow with out much success.

here is another favorite snowy past time, playing in the fallen tree at the edge of the woods. I don't know what the attraction is, but when it snows its were the kids head to play.

Climbing on the wood pile. I thought this was harmless till things went crash. I was left picking up the mess, while their fun continued.

Here is how the fun ended with a cup of hot cocoa.

And a warm bath. A must since we played a little too long and peed our pants. Something we haven't done for 1 1/2 years.
Anyway all in all a great snowy time.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Furry Friends Friday

This is Shadow. She is our barn cat of 13 1/2 years. She was born a barn cat so I guess it's fitting she will die a barn cat. We got her when she was only 4 weeks old. I didn't know it then but that is way too young to get a kitten. It does something to them to take them that young. Everyone of them seems to turn out evil, and shadow is indeed evil. When we first got her she was a very wild kitten. She loved to wrap her front paws around your arm and bite you while kicking you with her back nails at the same time. A very cat thing to do, but not knowing any better she wound up at the vets office for a spay and 4 foot declaw. Again not knowing then what I know now that would not have happened. The cat was miserable for 2 weeks. her paws bled cause she really had nothing to stand on. And this was before pain meds were given to cats too. Poor kitty. To make matters worse she got fleas and since advantage didn't exist back then it was routine dipping for poor Shadow. No wonder she is evil. Anyway She lived with us inside for 6 years but one day she walked up to our baby and bit her for no reason. Seriously the kid didn't touch her I was watching. So it was banishment to the screened in porch for Shadow. Then 3 years later we moved to the farm and she has been a barn cat ever since. Now by this time Shadow is old and has no reason to leave the barn. She has a five foot radius she stays in that includes her food water bed and toilet area. Her life is good. no one bothers her and she has food 24/7 and sleeps all the time. Everyone knows not to touch her cause she will still bite even though she only has 3 canine teeth left. She bites me almost every time I clip her nail. Yes she is declawed and she is poly dactyl meaning she has and extra toe on each front foot. The vet left one of the nails and since it doesn't touch the ground we must keep it trimmed so it doesn't grow into her toe pad. However with her age and clawlessness she still manages to catch a mouse every now and then. Shadow was our first pet and has moved 4 times with us and has put up with dogs and didn't put up with kids but Shadow is our first baby and we love her even if she doesn't love us.

The Reasons I Don't Bird

I will explain this photo in a moment. But first the reasons I'm not a birder.
I know some of the folks who visit my blog are avid birders and I think it is great. I enjoy many of your photos. Some of your birds are beautifully colored and a joy to see. My husband birds from time to time, but it is more in passing anymore. I however am not a birder and here are the reasons why.
1. they always poop all over my car , and its usually purple from the berries they eat, GROSS!
2.they insist on building nests in the tree in front of my bedroom and chirping me awake at god awful early hours dogs like to eat their poop, esp. goose at the lake
4.they eat my livestock
Anyway let me first start by saying raptors and waterfowl have always been some of my favorite birds as far as birds go. However today Mr. red tailed hawk was struck from my list. I have seen them along fence lines and road ditches eating their kills before thinking that's cool mother nature at work. Well today after a full week of been cooped up I bravely let my chickens out. At dusk when I went out to feed I heard my turkeys puttering and their heads looked really red. Not a good sign I knew then something had been in the chicken pen again. As I headed down I saw a hawk sitting so proudly eating his fresh kill one of my chickens! As I got closer he noticed me and flew off to perch in a tree in the woods, waiting for me to leave so he could finish dinning. He was just out of photo range, dang bird at least let me get a photo. The picture above is of the fence with feathers hanging off it and you can see a little disturbance to the ground were he scratched. Anyway I disposed of his kill and cooped up my 2 remaining girls guess they will be going in with the turkeys now since their pen has a top on it since turkeys fly very well. Well I also know that there are some who enjoy photos of dead things so here is Mr. hawks prize. Don't look if your faint of heart. Really don't it's gross. Guess My birds need a guard dog. Think I could train a retriever not to fetch them but protect them? No I didn't think so either.

And you thought they took the cold season off

Today is the warmest day we have had for awhile. It is January 22 and it is reading 46 degrees on my outside thermometer. This morning the ground was covered in snow. Now it has all melted away except for a small patch on the north side of my house that gets a lot of shade. Anyway I heard a humming noise from inside the house so I went to investigate. What I found was this large tractor in my neighbors field. It looks like he is probably spreading lime for this springs crops. I would have guessed it too muddy with all the melt off , but I was wrong. Our farmers work so hard year round to provide food. Yet most of them have to have jobs off the farm also just to make ends meet. I find this sad that our country doesn't support its farmers and instead will purchase things from overseas just to save a dollar. Some of those things become recalled anyway so what are we really saving. So I challenge you this spring when those farmers markets open up to go visit one and buy something locally. It may cost a hair more, but the benefits of flavor and health and supporting you neighbor far out weigh the cost. Also if you are feeding a pet and want something locally made may I recommend Science Diet. They buy all of their grain from farmers right here in the Midwest. Mainly Ohio and Indiana. And one of their largest production plants is located in Indiana just over the Ohio line, thus providing valuable jobs for your fellow neighbors. Ok Ok I'll get off my soap box now.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

What's Cooking Wednesday


We have the luxury of using low fat venison in substitute for beef in our house, but this recipe could easily be made with beef. I am not sure how ground turkey or chicken would taste but I be it would be worth a shot. We also have the luxury of using our homemade canned tomato sauce from our garden. that helps minimize the sugar levels found in many store bought products, but store bought will work.


1lb. ground venison browned

9 lasagna noodles cooked to package directions

1 1/2 cups ricotta cheese

1 pint of spaghetti sauce

Italian seasoning to taste, I use alot not sure how much I eyeball it

1 handful of favorite shredded cheese, we used cheddar

Brown venison in skillet and boil noodles. When venison is browned turn off heat and add ricotta and Italian seasoning. Drain noodles. Place three noodles in bottom of greased baking dish cover with 1/2 of meat mixture. Add three more noodles, add rest of meat mixture, add last three noodles. Now cover with sauce. Top with cheese bake at 400 degrees for about 10 minutes or till cheese is melted and sauce is hot.


You may also use shells instead of lasagna noodles and stuff the cooked shells with the meat mixture and bake in the oven like lasagna

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Cold Crisp and Awesome

Cabin Fever finally got the best of me. With our little girl back in school and my hubby off to work, me and my little boy headed out side.
I was on my way out to feed the animals, usually my son stays in and watches cartoons while I feed, but today I bundled him up and took him with me. He helped me feed the dogs, cat , and goats then decided he was bored and took off to play with his toys in the snow. Doesn't he look happy.
After we got the critters cared for we took a short walk in the woods. He found a treasure. It's a sweetgum ball off one of the trees.

The dogs seem to be enjoying the cold out in the exercise yard. I thought the sunrise was really pretty in the background.

Here is a photo from our hike in the woods, this is a creek that runs through the property. I thought it was pretty all snow covered.
After our hike we came in cause I knew he was cold because I was getting cold. Did I mention it was a balmy 9 degrees out. Anyway I asked him if he was cold he said no mom That Was Awesome.! I may freeze him to death but a least he's having a good time.