My farm life during May.
Let me tell
you about the fox and chickens,
the bees, my favorite cheese
and how to make Indian Spinach from Lambs Quarters.
I have tried every day for over a week
to write something, anything about my homesteading life so you all
would know I have not abandon
this blog. May has been a busy month as I know it has been for many.
Everything grows so fast in the spring.
Lawns need mowing
Trees get out of hand. Hay needs mowing. Thistles need chopping or
spraying. Insects take over. May, yes, spring has sprung.
I thought I would write again about my
farm life this month since I'm sliding
under the wire here. I would simply tell you about my month and how I
handled the farming issues that arose. Such as the six bee stings. I'm
they were really bees, they looked like bees, but 2 weeks later I'm
still healing. I used clay to pull out the venom. Oh my were those
leaky bites. They swelled up the size of a dime. No, I'm not allergic
to bee stings. These were just very talented bees.
Then there was the huge ant hill that
was constructed in the front yard. I have never seen something so large
be constructed that fast. 2 large bucks of boiling water and that
problem was solved.
Then there was the fox that about wiped
me out of chickens. I lost over 65 birds this month. Such is farm life!
It was 2 night's
worth of killings. I don't dare kill the fox. It's a male, and if I do
that it will only invite many more males into the area until another
King is declared.
Yes, this King has found his feeding
ground and the next may not, however I'm not willing to take that
chance. I literally board up and screw in those boards every night, and
every morning go out with my screw gun and let the chicks out. I have
re-fenced with a welded 1/3" wire, 4' high to the tune of a few hundred
dollars I didn't have. That's okay though, as hay was cut so the money
will come back soon.
This brings me to the fact a friend
dumped a mare and foal on my door step, I used to own them so I gladly
took them back. This also means my hay ground is being violated and my
resident horse hates the foal.
We had a few close calls over that
deal. I am now building fence like a mad woman to keep the horses off
the hay ground and have called another friend to take my horse so he
can work in a wild west show and not tear down more fences chasing this
poor colt over them.
Farm Life and Breeding Rabbits
I'm still working on my house, so
plaster, paint, fences, what garden I managed to put in, and the
Oh the bunnies! I had a
wonderful litter of Flemish Giants I
so adore them. My next litter is due on my birthday. I can't wait.
This brings us to Lucy. Lucy is a small
black and white Dutch
rabbit that lives freely in the yard. She never
leaves and I have no fear of her being eaten or suffering through a
storm. She asks to come into the house when she feels she needs some
safety. She also loves to ride in the truck and will also run to the
truck if she wants to go for a ride. She is a joy to say the least.
Lucy however was also one of the bits of excitement this month in my
All my rabbit bucks are in pens a min.
height with double wire so no one is breeding through those pens. Some
how Lucy ended up pregnant. Wild rabbits cannot breed with domestic
rabbits, therefore this was not possible. I'm sure you have heard the
adage, "Beware of what you ask for".
Well, I had been wanting to try this
new rabbit hopping and agility but cannot hop a Flemish. It's like
jumping a draft horse. However the Draft warm blood crosses do very
well, and this I'm sure was what Lucy had in mind when the little agile
girl cleared the 4' pen to be bred by my giants. Yes, I'm a bit worried
about the birth. I also know that if everyone survives this, my hopping
rabbit will be born. The world record for jumps is 4.5 feet, Lucky
lacked that by 5" and she weighs a mere 2.5 lbs. I'm sure that with
this cross we could be very competitive.
I'm very excited, however unplanned
this was, it was life moving me forward when I didn't have time to fill
my own dreams and wishes, life made the time. I also would like to
assure my readers that rabbits adjust the size of their kits to the
mothers size. They are not like dogs and other animals that could have
to large a birth. Rabbits seem to catch up later. However my vet has
been made aware and if need be, we are ready for the worst, and hope
for the best.
Then, there is the most exciting thing
of all. I met a wonderful man a while ago. He is retired army and loves
the country and farm. We have decided to move in together here on One
Sky Ranch, the first week of June. What a birthday present huh?
So you see I have not forgotten my farm
blog, and you all. I really was busy. I promise to do better in June.
Bill is very organized and I'm sure he will help me "find time" every 2
weeks to write in with new ideas about how to make your farming life
With this, I will leave you with one of
my favorite homemade cheese recipes. It's spring so I know the babies
are on the ground, and those goats are fresh. This is one of my old
standbys when I'm just too busy and want some of that good old "farm
You can fry this stuff and it will not
melt. Its wonderful as cheese sticks. Put in stir-fries, soups, chili..
it doesn't matter. I saute it with veggies and herbs. I exudes the
flavor of whatever you cook it in. This is not a good fresh cheese,
cooking makes all the difference.
Farm Life and My Favorite Homemade Cheese Recipe
Heat 1 gallon of whole milk to 180 over
direct heat (see.. it's really easy)
***Make sure your put is NOT aluminum!
If it is enamel, make sure there are no chips or cracks, you can get
very ill if there is. Only use stainless steel or non chipped enamel
even your spoon.. no wood as its porous and that's where germs live.
Ok! You have your milk in a pot
stirring a lot so that it does not scorch. Do not stop stirring!
Maintain the 180 degrees for several minutes. Add vinegar until you see
it form curds. About 1/4 cup will do. Use white vinegar.
After the tiny curds are formed pour
into cheese cloth and hang. Many of the issues with hot weather and
hanging will not effect this cheese. This is a 'no fuss, no muss' easy
cheese. Hang it until it stops dripping, remove from the cloth and
poof! You are ready to go!
Just lay it on the grill with your chicken or put it in the
pot with your stew. It's awesome in anything cooked.
Farm Life and Indian Spinach & Fry Bread
The Lambs Quarters are also up now and
if you have never had Indian Spinach.., you must try it!
Pick 4 times the amount of Lambs
Quarter tops you think you will need. Wash them well as they are a bit
sandy. Find some of those walking onions that should also be very ready
about now. Even the green parts will work very well. Grab a Tortilla or
make some fry bread.
(Fry bread, Get a bowl of flour and add
a pinch of salt and baking soda to it, a bit of sugar and a small
amount of yeast if you like. Add warm water and make a soft dough. Fry
This bread made over a grill or fire
without being fried is called cowboy bread
and is also very good.
Boil your Lambs Quarters, just until
they turn green. Saute your onions and whatever else you like even a
strip of bacon, in a pan, then add your greens and fry all together for
a short while to mix. Place in a tortilla or fry bread and enjoy. I
also like to add fresh salsa to mine, or a bit of hot sauce.
Lambs Quarters are so good for you that
if you have malnutrition these will pull you right out of it. They are
wonderful for this time of year when your body is working harder then
it did last winter and is adjusting to all you have to do. You will
feel better and the taste is awesome. No bitterness here.
See you all in June! Gypsy.
resident homestead blogger from One
Wanderings Homestead Blog
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