Wednesday, July 31, 2013

just a farmer . . .

So today I am taking in some of the scrap metal that we have in our woods.  It has been three years that I have wanted to get it out, and this summer is the time.

As I am on the way to the metal recycle plant, the phone company men that are working on the new poles slow me down and have me drive on the side of the road so as not to get hit by a loose pole, or their truck.  I recognized the guy who was waving me to the side because he had been to the farm to buy eggs a few weeks earlier.  He lives in Toledo, Ohio, a large city on the north part of the state.  To him, I am just a guy that sold him eggs from my farm.  He has no idea that I spent most of my life in a large city.  In fact, several times larger than the one he now lives in.

So as I pass slowly by, I lean a little out of the window and say "hey boss" and wave a little.  He responds with a nod and a "hey" back.  And after passing, I look in the rear view mirror and hear him say "hey, you are that farmer guy . . ." as he remembered that he had bought eggs at my farm.  To him, I am a farmer.  I am not a teacher.  Not a professional in any way.  To him, just a plain farmer.

And I drove on down the road a little honored.  :)

Sunday, July 21, 2013

hot days . . .

Since it has been really hot the past several days, I moved the cooking to the basement kitchen.  A few nights ago we had deep fried zucchini, onion rings, and bass fish.  It was great to be in a somewhat cool room while the deep fryer was on.
And deep fried zucchini is one of my ALL TIME favorite fried foods.  I sliced them in a french fry cutter and used a light batter of flour, milk, garlic, salt and pepper.  I fried them crispy (because we all like them that way) in a deep fryer full of peanut oil.  Dipped in a little ranch style dressing . . . OOH they are good!
And to break the evening heat, a couple of days ago I sat out front with some great neighbors/friends enjoying some Redd's Apple Ale.  Dar and Darlene live a few miles down the road and have been a wonderful couple that have made all of us feel welcome in our home in NW Ohio.  They are not only kind/welcoming people, but they are also very giving people.  That evening they brought over some extra zucchini and cucumbers from their garden to share with us.

Friday, July 12, 2013

in the wind . . .

 Call me crazy, but I love doing laundry.  Especially the line drying part.  There is something wonderful about air-fresh smelling sheets, towels, and clothes.  And I enjoy the stiffness that comes with it as well.
 Last year in July,  I taught Maine and Asher how to sort clothes, and how to use the washer.  The older three had already learned how to wash their own clothes.  The next step on the country venture was to make use of the natural dryer.

We had two makeshift clothes lines and I required all of the children (except Gresham) to line dry their clothes.  I was hoping to transfer my laundry passion and they too would be hooked on clothes that smelled and felt FRESH.  We were using natural Charlie's Soap for all the washing and trying to use as many natural products in the house as possible.  And as of two days ago, it has been a year since we have used the basement dryer (minus a couple of emergency situations).

I had the poles made three years ago our first summer here.  They just sat in the machine barn until a month ago.  Each of the children spent a little time digging holes for me and Asher and I set the poles in concrete.  It took me so long to get them in the ground because I wanted to make sure the line was put in an efficient, assessable place.  It had to be running north and south, and somewhat close to the basement door.  And it looks like I found a great spot for it!  The clothes WHIP in the wind, and when it is warm out, they dry in minutes.
In addition, Macy and I started on the second pergola last weekend.  I had her help me erect the uprights and attach one of the cross beams.  I had the wood purchased from the first one I built and so it was a matter of just putting it together.  Once I am finished I will be able to plant some trumpet vines along the bottom of it like I did the other.  My goal is to have the vines take over the structure so it creates a shady spot to rest in while working in the garden areas.

Friday, July 5, 2013

only on a farm . . .

Butterscotch has a new little baby to tend to now.  One that does not look like the rest!  But certainly has joined the rest in getting some of mother's milk.

Our retriever is an avid hunter.  She captures and brings back all sorts of animals for us to see.  Most of the time she just plays with them.  If she is hungry, she eats them.  The other day she brought up a little baby bunny for us to check out.  Gresham noticed that she had brought her up to the house, and brought the little animal in the house to show me.  WHILE I WAS STILL IN BED.  :)

The children decided to let the cat mother her since she was so small.  So far so good.  She licks her, nurses her, and carries her around like she does all the other kittens.  Fascinating how all that works.

So now all we are waiting on here on the farm is our milk cow Janey to calve.  She is due any time now.  And it will be nice to be back in milk at the house.

This spring we have had:  10 puppies, 5 kittens, 2 sheep, 1 foal, and our soon-to-be calf.  Yeah for farm life.