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.

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

New Years Chicks

What could be better to bring in the new year than new baby chicks?

It's a strange time of year to get chicks, I know.
It's 20 degrees outside today.
Never the less, I wanted winter chicks so they would lay by summer.

Our last little flock of Dominiques were so gentle but they didn't fare that well.  Only half of them made it through the summer and it wasn't even that hot.  Even though I really prefer heritage breeds, I decided to try a crossbreed designed for our climate from a reputable Oklahoma hatchery.  Our weather is blazing hot and freezing cold and windy in between.  The chicken man promises this flock of Delaware Dixies is just what we need.

They were born last night.  I got the call this morning that they arrived.  So we made the trek over an hour away to pick up our new girls.  They are lively little things!  The healthiest looking chicks we've ever had.

Oh, my!  They are so cute!

We will pamper them inside for a few days til the weather is not so harsh for the newborn chicks.  Then out they go to the shed to grow into big girls.  Dear Lizzy will become mother hen and the Dominiques... well the freezer is in their future if they make it til spring.

Isaiah 43:19
Behold, I will do a new thing;
now it shall spring forth;
shall ye not know it?
I will even make a way in the wilderness,
rivers in the desert.

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

To You ~

Isiah 9:6
For to us a child is born,
to us a son is given,
and the government will be on his shoulders.
And he will be called Wonderful Counselor,
Mighty God,
Everlasting Father,
Prince of Peace.

Sunday, December 21, 2014

Cranberries for the Holiday Table

This sweet and tart treat on the table
is sure to disappear this Christmas.
I've been making it for years and it's so easy.
So don't buy the canned stuff.  Really, it gives cranberries a bad name. ;)

Cook two bags of fresh cranberries with 2 1/2 cups of sugar over medium heat stirring constantly.

After a few minutes it will look like this.  

Cook a little more until all the cranberries have popped.

Stir in one jar of orange marmalade
and 1 cup coarsely chopped pecans.

Spoon into jars and store in the refrigerator
or save some in the freezer.

Better yet, wrap some up to share with friends.

(Recipe makes 3 pint jars.)

Psalm 34:8
Taste and see that the Lord is good.

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Decorating the Farmhouse for Christmas

A few of my favorites this year:

 a simple wreath with a burlap bow

 a galvanized pot for the real Christmas tree

 Santa mugs & greenery in the kitchen

a little more green in the living room
around our new four horn Jacob sheep skull

the North Pole chalkboard pantry door

and a cozy quilt that looks like Christmas
even though we used it all year long.

Happy Christmas!

May the God of hope fill you with
joy and peace in believing,
so that by the power of the Holy Spirit
you may abound in hope.
Romans 15:13

Thursday, December 11, 2014

A Kid's Snowman Painting Party

I teach a little boy's class at our home school co-op.
It's full of 3rd through 5th grade boys
and it's so much fun since my own boys aren't little anymore.

original snowman painting here

Yesterday, to celebrate the Christmas season, 
we ditched the regular classwork and had a party ~
A Snowman Painting Party.

I did some decorating to make the classroom cute.

I printed labels for the Melted Snowman water bottles.

Drew snowman faces on the rinse cups for their paint brushes.

And made some marshmallow snowman treats with the help of edible markers.  We used the mini marshmallows to play bingo while their paintings dried.

A few treats to take home:
Candy dipped Oreos
again decorated with edible marker faces

All of the ideas came from Pinterest.  

They did a great job on their paintings!  Their moms were so impressed with their artistic ability.  What can I say, I have great boys in my class!

Sunday, December 7, 2014

A Cat & Mouse Tale

Simba's Story

I love to hunt ~ live for it really.  Well, that and rubbing my face on the old master's goatee and getting tummy rubs by the younger masters.  Those are second however to the unending supply of rodents on the farm.  Every morning after my piddly breakfast of kitty food & a saucer of milk,
I'm off to find something more substantial to eat.

One fine morning, I caught a fat little mouse,
Another bigger one at mid day.
And still another around dinner time.
I give you permission to be impressed!  I'm an amazing hunter really.

I always bring the mice
to the yard outside the dining room window for my humans in the Red Farmhouse to admire.
They need to see that I earn my keep, unlike those stupid dogs!

As I was playing "Cat and Mouse" with my last catch,
the slobbering stupid male dog, "Tuff " did the unthinkable.
He STOLE my mouse and carried it INSIDE the farmhouse.
Honestly, I don't know why they let those animals in there while I have to stay in the garage.   I mean they're dogs for goodness sake.  Anyway, I watched from the window as the Mrs. asked him what he had in his mouth.  He replied promptly by dropping my active new friend on the floor. There were screams and shouts as the mouse scurried around.  You should have heard them.  I mean really people, it's just a mouse!
Of course, I heard someone shout, "Get the cat!"

The next thing I knew, I was quickly scooped up and rushed into the house.
Sitting me down in the living room floor, I looked around. "WOW, what a great place.  Why haven't I been asked in here before?" While I was taking in the sites, the family quickly moved a table out of the way.  Behind it cowered my mouse. The mouse looked at me and I looked at all of the humans.
 "I've had enough today."
 "Besides it has dog slobber on it."

So back outside I went!
I'm seriously unappreciated.

The oldest son, grabbed the mouse (gloved hand of course) and threw the mouse into the the ditch lillies.  "Gee, thanks" I thought to myself.  Needless to say, the mouse was my next morning's meal since he was no longer covered with dog slobber...

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Pepperocini Roast

Tired of turkey?
Need an easy meal for dinner?
Try this Pepperocini Roast.

I usually let my roasts rest in the refrigerator for a day or two after thawing.
Then I brown the top and bottom in butter before roasting.
Not this one.  It went straight from the freezer to the oven
and cooked all day on 225 degrees.
I was desperate for something easy for dinner that day.  
What else can I say?
I may be fixing roast this way from now on.  It was a big hit!

One large roast with
one jar of pepperocini peppers poured over the top.
Sprinkle with salt & pepper.
Cook all day on a low temp.

That's it!
Seriously.  That's it.
Thank goodness.  We all need some recipes like that during the holidays.
Thanks to my friend, Brenda for the idea.
BTW: It's great in a crockpot too.  I just love my red enameled cast iron pot. :) 


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