Good bye city life! Our family designed and built an industrial but old fashioned farmhouse on nine acres. Now we are building our homestead ~ or is it building us? Grab your boots and join us on our journey to country living.

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Sheep Shed

Our little white barn has had several jobs over the last year.


First it was the goat house.
Then is was the hawk hut.
Now, it's the sheep shed.

With lambs on the way, we needed a place for birthing pens,
or jugs as they call them.


Wayne made ours out of aluminum.  He's so talented!  See how the rails are closer at the bottom? Genius, I tell you.  It's handy that we have a family manufacturing business with aluminum to spare.


To the jugs, we added a layer of pine shavings on the floor with straw on top of that so it will be nice and soft for the little lambs.


There are feed bins and water buckets up high so the little ones won't reach them (we hope)


and a fire proof heat lamp mounted low enough to keep them warm.


There's a new frost free faucet right outside for water.


And a shelf with lambing supplies close to the jugs.


Everything is ready.
Now we just need some babies!

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Jar Soap Dispenser


I first saw these cute soap dispensers at Pottery Barn and wanted some.  Then I ran across a tutorial on how to make your own on Julia's adorable blog, Blissfully Content.  She has the cutest ideas!


I searched for zinc lids online and then decided maybe I should use what I had.  Truth is, I'm impatient!  So I used new jars and white plastic freezer jar lids.


I really like how they turned out.


And then my sis~in~law brought me another soap pump! 
{Thanks, Scharlee!} And so I made one out of a really big old Atlas jar for my kitchen sink.


I love jars!
Visit Julia for instructions on how to make one for your farmhouse.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Simply Cornbread



I don't know what it is about being back home but it makes me want to bake.  Maybe I just need the aroma of fresh baked bread.  Maybe I need homemade after eating out for a week.   At least, I have help from my little guy {baking} and from all the guys {eating}!

recipe for one rise bread here

In just a few days, I have baked four loaves of bread ~ two white & two wheat, homemade pancakes ~twice, and fresh crispy cornbread.  Oh, and some chocolate chip cookies were in there too.

Back to the cornbread.
  Simple. Southern. Speedy. Scrump-dilly-ish!


I use a recipe from my well worn Southern Living Cookbook.  It's for corn sticks but it doesn't matter.  It can go in a pan and cook a little longer.  This can also be made Gluten Free easily by substituting a GF flour mix or you can just use all cornmeal.  It works either way!

Ingredients:
1 1/4 cups cornmeal
3/4 cups flour
1 T. + 1 t. baking powder
3/4 t. salt
1/4 cup sugar (less if you want)
2 eggs
1 1/2 cups buttermilk (or 1 cup milk)
1/4 cups vegetable oil


Start with an old cast iron skillet.
The older the better. 
Heat oven to 425 F.
Pour oil in bottom of pan and heat in oven
while you are mixing the batter.

Whisk dry ingredients together in large bowl.

Add eggs and milk.

Stir quickly just until incorporated but no more.
I mean it, stop stirring.  It will be ok if there are lumps.

Pour in hot skillet.


Bake for 20-25 minutes or until pulled away from the edges of the pan and browned on top.

Crispy on the edges and fluffy in the middle,
 slathered with butter and honey.
That's simply delicious cornbread
especially if it's with a big bowl of beans!

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Silent Treatment

After being gone more than a week, I woke on Sunday morning longing to see the animals.  Even though I normally don't go out at first light with my hubby, I donned my coveralls and coat and joined him in the cold. 

Lewis & Clark always talk to me as I step out the door onto the breezeway.  Always.  But I heard nothing.  I could see they were fine so I headed to the chicken coop to let them out before rooster woke the neighbors. 

Still no chatter from the goat pen.  Obviously, I was being given the silent treatment. 

Lewis

"Hello, boys!" I said, leaning over the gate.
And then they replied,
 "Who are you?" 
&
 "Where is the cute teenage girl that has been
 bringing us animal crackers?"

I think they have forgiven me now.
At least they are talking to me again.


But it took a lot of animal crackers!

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Back from the Mountains

Bubba & Betty with Wayne & Kim

This past week, our family took a well needed vacation from the farm.  It's the first one that we have gone on since building our farmhouse and farm almost three years ago.
(Yes, I was posting farm happenings while gone.  I couldn't go a whole week without it. Isn't it great that you can pre-post?)


Our winter destination was Crested Butte, Colorado.
It's simply gorgeous!  We've been there a couple of times before and it was calling us back.


The day we arrived it snowed a foot.  It made for wonderful skiing!


The boys loved it!  Wayne loved that they were all old enough to carry their own gear.  I loved it that we got to have some couple time to ski together.


One of the things we love about Crested Butte is the colorful old buildings. A lot of them were built in the early 1900s.  This is a coffee house covered with colorful license plates.  Cute!


This artist was painting the town with amazing detail
~ with gloves on!


One afternoon we traded our skis for sleds and went snowmobiling.
I was the old lady that everyone was waiting for.  It was great fun ~ pure exhilaration mixed with pure terror.


On the way there we stopped at the Royal Gorge Bridge.


It's the world's highest suspension bridge.
It's over 1,000 feet down to the Arkansas River.

picture I took from the gondola

You can walk or drive over it.
Jared wasn't too thrilled with the height or the fact that it shook in the wind.


Jake, Jonah & I took the gondola across.  It's the red spot in the photo below.  I have to say that was one of the most adventurous things I have done.  I don't know what I was thinking!


One of the highlights was our date night.  Who would have thought we could get a meal like this in an old house in an alleyway in a sleepy ski village.  Our meal at Soupcon (pronounced soop so(n)) was simply the BEST food we have ever eaten!
It was too pretty to eat and too delicious not to eat every bite!

photo credit: Soupcon

It was a great escape to the mountains.
It's nice to be back home on the farm though.

Friday, January 20, 2012

First-timers

Our three first timers are looking a little more filled out now from their lambs.


Chili's belly can be see from straight on now.

Smiley is looking a fatter too.


And Poppy, well, she is just down right cute in her maternity wear!

It will be exciting (& a little scary) to see how these girls do.
One month to go for these ewes.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

It's nice to see

ducks on the pond


& geese in the pasture.

Monday, January 16, 2012

Oklahoma Landscape

It seems bare in the winter but there is always beauty if you look for it.






Saturday, January 14, 2012

Knitting lesson

The thought of spinning yarn from our own fleeces from our own sheep has caused me to take on one more new thing ~ knitting.


I've wanted to learn to knit for years!  I've just never forced myself to do it although I have been doing every other form of needlework for at least 25 years.  Ok, longer than that really.  My great grandmother put a sewing needle in my hand at a very young age.  I think that experience will make knitting a little easier to pick up.  I hope!

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