Thursday, April 30, 2009

Eating their curds and whey...

I have failed to make cheese with my goat milk. Any goat farmers or cheesemeisters care to offer an opinion? I was trying for mozzerella which I can make in an hour with cow milk. Not so much with Dottie milk. Hmmm, I need to google I guess.

Anyway, the chickies enjoyed the whey produced from the cow milk mozzerella (which I had to make to confirm my mozzerella making ability-turned out lovely) and the curds and whey from the failed goat milk.

See how noble Charles is being. He was crowing for all the hens to come partake of the treat he had found for them. He is such a good provider. Though the leghorn in the corner might have a thing to say about that in the next few weeks. We must never forget that no matter how fine we think ourselves, there is always someone younger and stronger right behind us.

Smiles from the (goat mozerella-less) farm,

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Good eats...

Pulled pork cooked in the crock pot for 10 hours on home made bulkie rolls, big scoop of potato salad, home made sweet pickles...

And for desert...home made eclairs...

Oh yeah, I went there...

They're try...

You will need:

For puffs:
1/2cup of water
1/4 cup margarine or butter
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon of salt
2 eggs

One box of instant vanilla pudding mixed according to package and chilled.

For icing:
1 cup of confectioners sugar
Two tablespoons of milk (or enough so that is not runny, but not frosting)
1 Tablespoon vanilla
Handful of unsweetened chocolate chips about 1/4 of a cup

Heat your oven to 425 degrees F. Grease cookie sheet.

In medium sauce pan boil your water and butter. Stir in the flour and salt, keep stirring until it all comes together is a sort of ball. Remove from heat.

Add the eggs one at a time, mix with a hand mixer until dough is smooth. Spoon dough onto your cookie sheet and shape into rectangles, about 1" by 2 1/2" long (they will "puff" up and be about twice this size). You should get about nine. Bake for about 22 minutes. Let cool and cut a small dime sized hole in one end. Put some of your pudding in a baggie with the edge cut off and squeeze into each pastry.

Mix confectioners sugar, milk and vanilla. Melt your chocolate in a double boiler or a little pan placed on top of bigger pan with about an inch of water. Mix sugar mixture with chocolate and spread on cooled eclairs.

Tell everyone how hard that was and let them be awed. And the good thing is that you have nine and you can't serve an odd number, so you HAVE to eat one, as you will see if you count the eclairs in my picture.

Enjoy the sun!

Smiles from the farm...

Thursday, April 23, 2009

The Seven Stages of Stupid...

There is a certain peace gained from the daily chores on my tiny little farm. Before the kids get up and the day starts to really churn, I slip on my boots and head out to feed the goats and let them out into the pasture. I head to the hen house to check their feed and refill the waterers.

On this particular day things just started a little off. First of all it's April vacation so the house is FULL of people this morning. AND it's raining so my husband didn't go to work-one more person. They are all up milling around getting in my way, messing things up. (Except the teenager, she's not up) SO, I head out to do my chores leaving the melee behind me. I feed the goats, pet dear Dottie and head to the chicken house. I open the latch, step in and the wind blows the door shut. Whatever. I feed the chickens, check for eggs, sneer at Charles for being a jerk and push open the door. I push open the door. The door has latched and I am trapped in the hen house. There is no need to holler for help, no one can hear me out here. I decided to wait. and wait. How long before they begin to miss me?

So after 20 minutes my options are squeezing through the chicken door...Yeah, that's not happening. Ever.

I could climb up to these windows and somehow get my feet out and then scoot out...TWENTY years ago maybe.

So I stand there waiting for them to miss me. It stinks. Figuratively and literally. The chickens are suspicious of me. I hope I don't die here. I can't believe I have been out here for 40 minutes and no one has missed me. Help...

I go through the seven stages of grief.

1. Shock and Denial~I can't believe that the door had the audacity to shut and there is no way that this can be happening to ME!

2. Pain and Guilt~Well the smell is almost painful and I should have replaced the wire that opens the latch from the inside when it fell off. I didn't, I am so stupid.

3. Anger and Bargaining~How could those people just leave me out here. If the'd only come get me I'd never be snippy at them again. Except for sometimes when they annoy me.

4. Depression, reflection and lonliness~This is so not fun. I think of the things that are just outside that door. I miss the noise and clamor that is sure to be going on in my kitchen. Chickens do not make good friends, they all are smushed into a corner trying to get away from me.

5. The upward turn~I think this is when I actually tried to get up on the box and climb out through the window.

6. Reconstruction and Working Through~I took the matter into my own hands (after about an HOUR) and kicked the door down.

7. Acceptance and Hope~Now I've got a broken door but it can be fixed and my backyard never looked so lovely! I'm free!


Smiles from the farm,

PS: PLEASE check out this dear blog, Rural Maine Life
She has the most darling give away in celebration of her birthday and her 100th post! She is the loveliest person and smart enough to not get caught in a chicken house.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Where has the love gone?

A long time ago there lived a poor stable boy named Charles. He was very handsome, but small and weak. He dreamed of being the King.
But alas the King was strong and Charles was NO match for his size or brawn.

So Charles hatched a plan (heehee~"hatched"~see he's a chicken-ok sorry)to overthrow the King and take the throne for himself! He preyed upon the weakness of She Who Brings Forth Grain. (Charles' evil plan in action)
It worked, for the King was cast from his seat and Charles was now in Charge. (heehee~see there used to be this show, Scott Baio-no? Ok sorry)

He ruled his kingdom with a firm hand, uh wing.

He never let his size deter him from making royal decrees or having his way with the ladies-(chicka chicka mow~wow)

Alas it has been told that "Absolute Power Corupts Absolutely" and Charles' reign is no exception. Charles has resorted to fear tactics and bold attacks against anyone who DARES venture into his territory.

Even She Who Brings Forth Grain is not safe from his aggression, physically or emotionally as she runs across the yard screaming "Charles you little B$%&#@, get the hell away from me!" in the most dignified manner.

So what will become of Charles? Will he be allowed to continue this behavior? Will he get shipped off to ports unknown? The future seemes uncertain for our unlikely hero. Tune in next time for "Recipes for Little Chickens with Attitudes" or "Where the heck are the band-aids?"

Smiles from the Farm,

Monday, April 13, 2009

Just out for a ride...

We used to go "for rides" when I was a kid. There was no destination, just out for a ride. Sometimes we'd end up somewhere but it was never intentional. We'd stop and visit, but we never called first. We were just out for a ride. We don't do that much anymore. It's probably the price of gas or that there's too much to miss on television.

Well me and my mom went out for a ride on Easter. We were going to visit my grandmother, but realized she wouldn't be home on Easter. So we just went for a ride.

We found this in Guilford, Maine. It's an honest to goodness, covered bridge. Not the original. The little plaque said that the original and three subsequent bridges were all lost in floods. I sensed a pattern of sorts, but since no one was around I kept it to myself.

I asked my mother if we should go across it. She said since there was nothing saying we couldn't, we might as well. Sounded like pretty solid logic to me. So we did.

Of course we had no idea what was on the other side of the river, but it was ok. The snow was melted enough that we could turn around. So we went back across and found a little diner and I had a turkey sandwich and she had fried shrimp and I may or may not have stopped, looked and put a deposit on another goat. After all we were just out for a ride, anything can happen.

Smiles from the farm,

P.S. Please check out this awesome giveway at Life On a Southern Farm They have the sweetest little chicken nesting boxees and they are actually giving one away! Her blog is precious too, so please check it out!

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Mushrooms on a log and some goats on a walk...

I went for a walk down back today. I brought the goats. First they needed to figure out who was the leader. It wasn't Ben.

And it wasn't Jerry. See how devastated Ben is by his defeat?

The leader was Dottie.

She was very pleased.

I found these cool mushrooms growing on a tree that the beavers had cut down. All these mushrooms on the same tree. Kind of cool.

Anyone ever noticed how hard it is to take pictures of beaver log mushrooms while there is a goat standing on your back? Just curious, I'm sure it's a common problem.

Smiles from the farm,

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Fresh scrambled eggs...

The breakfast of champions...

Fresh eggs from the Weird Chickens...

and fresh milk from Dottie the wonder goat...

Grammy's cast iron skillet...

A little mixing in vintage pyrex...


And enjoy! (Please don't mind the store bought white bread)

Smiles from the farm,

Monday, April 6, 2009

Her name is Dottie

And she's awesome.

Now what has she done...

There are times when I question her judgement.

For the most part she is a reasonable sort of person. Nothing fancy, no rash decisions.

After all she does have chickens in the backyard. She must have some sense.


So can someone explain THIS?

And why is it in the hen house?

As far as I can tell she got it to solve the mystery of the empty bird feeder.
If I'd have known that, I would have told her that I did it.

There was some brief explanation of it producing milk. Jeesh, next thing you know she'll want us to lay eggs or something crazy like that. Madness, udder madness.

The Spotted Hen

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Who done it?

This was full yesterday...Today it is not.

Red, do you know who did it?
She ain't talking. (And I don't know why she's in the laying box. SHE DOESN'T LAY EGGS!)

Did any of YOU see who did it? Nope. Not me. I saw NOTHING.

Charles, did you happen to see who emptied the bird feeder? And, by the way you are looking smashing today! Honestly I can't be bothered with such trivial matters! Pish, posh. I always look this good.

Ben, did you see who ate all the little bird's food? What's a bird?

How about you Jerry. Did you see who emptied the bird feeder?Ben did it.

Smiles from the farm,