January 26, 2011


It's amazing how the simplest things can bring a smile to your face on a farm! I was scurrying around yesterday evening after I got home from work, trying to get everyone in the barn fed, given hay and watered before dark. As I went into Dimples stall to add hay to his manger, I am sure my face lit up as I grinned from ear to ear. There in the corner of his stall were two GOOSE eggs in a nest of hay!!

I got my geese last Spring as babies and as they grew it became obvious that I had 2 females and a male. Over the past week, the male has been parading around, hissing at anything and everything that gets close to his ladies and biting at the chickens and goats. Now I know why!

After gathering all the eggs from the barn yesterday, I had quite the variety of eggs!

My Easter basket!

Since these are the first of the geese eggs, I am sure they will get a little larger as "first" eggs are always a little small! It's still a too cold with all the snow on the ground and 10-20 degree temps to let them try to sit and hatch babies but as soon as it's warmer we'll be trying for baby geese!!!

But until then we'll be having

scrambled eggs for breakfast!


January 21, 2011

Ummm, That's Loud!

The first time I heard this it scared me! I was standing right by the gate and "it" was right behind me! I nearly pee'd my pants! Now, I wait to hear it each and every day as I head to the barn to feed my critters. I'm walking so please forgive the camera shake!

These 4 are always up to no good!

Bella is always looking for food! I had to put a board across the top of this door because she can jump it like it's a foot tall!

There's Marv! The handsome male model of our goat world!

And Nellie. That belly just keeps getting bigger. I'm thinking at least 2 babies in there! I hope so. She lost her little guy last year and didn't get to be a momma. I'm hoping she has an easy delivery this year. Nellie has expensive pretty feeders hanging on the gate but she likes her old metal pan!

The geese are always sitting in the snow. They even ruffle their feathers like they are dusting. Guess with all that goose down they stay warm!

Time to check on the big chickens. There's always a party going on in here!

The hens were getting on their nest boxes and making a mess on my eggs so I fixed the problem. I think they like the privacy too.

I love country eggs and I'm getting several a day now that I have the lights set up on a timer.

The little chickens don't like the snow much but they come out to see if I have any feed for them.
Bootsie's babies are growing.

and like I always say....Stud...well he's just Stud!

This little gal is sitting on 9 eggs in the dead of winter! I moved her into the brooder and added a light and some heat.

and my baby, DIMPLE! He's such a sweetie!

We're all waiting for Spring when we can frolic in this field with new baby goats and go fishing in the pond. Oh wait, they will frolic and I'll go fishing!

Oh what the heck! I think I'll frolic too!

January 20, 2011

We Have Snow!

and I have been playing in it! I love making snow angels! I've made a snow angel each and every time it has snowed since I was a little girl. Had to get out there and make one this afternoon! I also rode on the sleds with the boys behind the 4-wheeler! I love hearing their giggles and "Go faster, Daddy!" We're making snow cream now....YUM!

I'll be posting a Winter farm update tomorrow. All the animals are staying warm and eating lots of hay! Do you have snow?? Have you been out playing in it??

January 16, 2011

Raising Hunters

If you were around back in November then you know that I am a hunter, my mother, my sister and even my grandmother is a hunter. Needless to say the men are all hunters too. It's in our blood! We hunt for the meat and if we get a trophy while at it then that makes hunting season even sweeter!

Jake is 7 and he started hunting youth hunts this past year. We decided to get him a rifle for Christmas. We picked it up last week and he's been practicing.

He got a Youth Model .243. He has the arm strength to hold it up for short periods of time. He'll work on that, his aim and gun safety between now and November when hunting season comes in. I am amazed at how fast he is growing up.

and his little brother is right on his heels!

Maybe he'll get this guy next year. He managed to outsmart me in 2010 and he's still around!

January 15, 2011

Candy Apple Pie

My sister-in-law made this pie awhile back using apples she had frozen over the summer. Just another reason I'm glad I froze plenty of apples!

I made these two pies for a cake and pie auction we are having tonight at church. It's a fundraiser for one of the young men getting ready to start a missionary trip.

(This recipe is for 1 pie)

Candy Apple Pie
6 cups sliced apples
2 Tbsp. lime juice
3/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup all purpose flour
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp. salt
Deep dish pie shell
Pastry roll
2 Tbsp. butter

1/4 cup butter
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
2 Tbsp. heavy whipping cream
1/2 cup chopped pecans

Toss apples in lime juice. Combine dry ingredients, add to apples. Fill crust with apple mixture. Dot top with butter, cover with pastry roll. Flute edges and cut steam vents. Bake at 400 degrees for 40-45 minutes.
For the topping: Melt butter in saucepan, add brown sugar and whipping cream, bring to a boil, stirring constantly. Remove from heat then add pecans. Pour over crust and bake 3-4 minutes longer.


I have already told my husband that he is forbidden to bid on these pies because if I bring one of them home with us I will eat way too much of it!

I also baked this Mandarin Orange Cake (also known as a Pig Lickin' Cake).

January 14, 2011

I Love Candles!

and now I have something else to keep me busy!

This is just the first days completed projects!
Some of these are remelts from left over wax in the bottom of the containers I have been saving for making my own candles...

Some are from container wax (now my favorite because it has that solid color not a waxy look like the paraffin). Some are paraffin wax (second favorite) and soy wax (not so sure I like it).

This pineapple smells so good!
This one below has embedded pink hearts but it didn't quite turn out the way I wanted it to. I am going to have to work on the embedded part.

I also made these cute little candle melts. I am loving the little blue bears! They have a wild berry scent and smell so good! I did hearts and stars with my silicone molds.

I also did Mulberry, Sugar Cookie, Hazel Nut and Fresh Rain. I LOVE these little fat Mason jars for candles!

Candle-making is as addictive as soap-making and it's easy.

You need:

Pouring pot for melting wax

  • I used a hot glue gun to stick the wicks in the bottom of the containers and used a clothespin to hold the wick upright while pouring my wax.
  • You can use a double boiler but I just used a sauce pan, put three metal jar rings in the bottom, added water and sat my pouring pot on top of the rings. These rings hold the pouring pot off the bottom of the saucepan while your wax melts.
  • Heat your containers before pouring in your wax. This helps the wax adhere to the sides of the containers so you don't have those bubbly spots.
  • Your candles may have a sunken spot after cooling. You can reheat leftover wax and top the candles off or hit them with a heat gun for a few seconds and the tops will melt and level out.

Jake wants to try out some of the candle melts!

Tomorrow I'll be posting a new recipe I got from my sister-in-law....
Candy Apple Pie....YUM!

January 10, 2011

Mary Jane's Farm Magazine Winner

According to Randomizer.org., our winner is Vicki from Virginia!!! Congratulations Vicki! Please email me with your mailing address using the "Contact Me" link in the right sidebar! I had 47 entries for this magazine! That's a new record! I will definitely consider this magazine again for a future give away! My next give away will be during the first week of February!

Thanks to all of you who participated!!!

Don't forget to check out the new forum! It's a great place to get to know each other. A link has been added in the header at the top of the page for easy access.

January 9, 2011

Soap, Soap, Soap

I finally got the chance to make some soap earlier this week. The holidays have kept me from it and I have missed it. Earlier this week I made some acne-fighting oatmeal and honey goat milk soap.

It has a very natural honey scent. This soap is as natural as it gets. I used ground oatmeal, goat milk from my Bella and honey from a local beekeeper.

And guess what's in here? I have been saving these plastic Kool-Aid containers for molds for awhile.

They were perfect for what I was wanting to make.

I decided to play with one of my new scents. I had some orange soap colorant and a bottle of orange essential oil.

I had to cut the plastic bottom off and use a can to push the soap out of the molds but it wasn't too hard.

Please excuse all the pics, I love this new lens. Look at that Bokeh! (the blur of the background).

and this soap smells so good! Only 4 weeks of curing and I can use it!

It's great to be making soap again. This week I'm making Fresh Rain. I'm hoping to make a blue and green swirl soap!

I also picked up all the supplies to make candles, my next adventure!!!

Don't forget about the Mary Jane's Farm magazine give away tomorrow morning!!!

January 8, 2011

Adding A Forum

I decided awhile back that if and when I reached 250 followers I would start a forum to go along with my blog. Plus it's a new year...time to add on! I have been receiving several emails with questions and questions are coming up in the comments that I would love to be able to answer in a way that other readers can see as well. What better way to do that than a forum for discussing all things "country"? You will either have to register and then log in to post or using the little blue G (for Google) or the F (for Facebook) etc. and link your accounts but it will be worth the time it takes, I promise!!

I have several categories and boards already up and there is a suggestion board. If there is something you would like added please post it on the Board Suggestions board and I will gladly add it. It may not be a terribly busy place but it will be a place to post questions and hopefully get the answers you are looking for and a place to share stories and photos!

So check it out!

My Country Blog Forum

Please let me know if you have any questions or problems getting in!

I will be adding a direct link back to the blog from the forum as soon as I get a small banner made for it and a forum link will be added in the menu bar here at the top soon.

I'll be posting about my soapy play day tomorrow! I made orange soap and honey and oatmeal goat milk soap!

January 5, 2011

Today I Play (January Give Away)

The new job went well yesterday. I did a lot of orientation, policy and procedure testing and staring at a computer screen. Thursday, I start some actual "job" stuff. I think I'll take today as a play day! It's been over a month since I made soap and I miss it!

A friend of mine sent me a box of essential and fragrance oils she found in a box of craft items from a yard sale so I decided to go through them this morning and see what I have. Lots and lots of different scents to play with. Some are labeled, some are not. The unlabeled are going in the "use for candle-making" pile. I haven't decided what scent I'm going with today but it will be a cold process soap and I will post the results on Friday.

My give away is for a year's subscription (6 issues) Mary Jane's Farm magazine.

(Photo property of Mary Jane's Farm magazine)

This is not sponsored by MJF magazine and I, in no way, benefit from this give away other than the good feeling I get from sharing it with my readers. I received an offer for a free issue a few weeks ago and took advantage of it. The magazine is full of wonderful ideas and articles on everything from gardening secrets to featured artists to growing organic foods. Check out the link above and see some of the wonderful things this magazine has to offer.

To enter, leave me a comment telling me you want to win! Contest ends Monday, January 10th at 9:00 a.m. central time!

January 1, 2011

My Goals for 2011

As a farm/country/gardening blog, there are many things I can think of that I would like to accomplish in the coming year. Below is a list of a few that I can think of right now. I am sure the list will grow longer as I mark off completed items throughout the year.

One of my goals last year was to find a miniature donkey and I completed that goal with 2 days to spare!
  • Finish fencing our front lot for the goats and donkeys. It's 50% done as of right now.
  • Find Dimple a girlfriend!!
  • I always want a bigger, better vegetable garden.
  • Start a large herb garden for growing my own herbs to use in canning, soap-making, etc.
  • Can more. I would love to can some jams and jellies for homemade gift baskets this year.
  • Candlemaking
  • Work on different types of gift baskets using my Country Made Essentials.
  • Improve and learn new soap-making techniques.
  • Add at least 2 more milk goats to my herd.
  • More chicks, guineas and hopefully geese!
  • I also have a friend who has promised to save me turkey eggs for incubating this spring.
  • Have a happy healthy and easy deliver of baby goats in the spring!
  • Work on the barn and stalls, replace boards, gates, etc.
  • More fish for the pond.
  • Fill the barn loft with hay this fall for the coming winter and spring.
  • Stock up some straw for bedding. There's a shortage this year due to the drought and lack of wheat grown this past year.
  • A new longer, bigger, better clothesline!
I am telling everyone I am taking this new job (2nd job) that I start on Tuesday to support my habits.....animal habits!

What are your farm goals for 2011??


For those of you who are new followers/readers, don't forget to check out the forum and join in on our discussions there.

My Country Blog of This and That Forum

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All images and graphics on this page were made by me with the exception of that little rooster! He came from Beth Logan's Checkered Chickens at pccrafter.com. Photos were taken by me and graphics were created using Photoshop CS2.
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Thank you!