Sunday, January 15, 2012

Sunday mornings are my favorite
I'm addicted to Mare Stare. Every night I load up my computer, go to this site, hit the message boards and read up on all the pregnant mares. I open up to 12 windows with webcams right in their stalls and watch with a hawk eye for every twitch, every lifted tail, and every kick to the belly. Is this it? Is she ready? I join the other wackies like me in the chat room, and we gossip about life and, "Oh man, Mai just layed down, did you see Fanny glare at here belly?" And every now and then I get to feel like I'm right there in the stall with the mare and the owners while she delivers her foal. We all wait with our breath held for the owner to hold up the, "It's a filly", or the "It's a colt," sign. And then we all cheer when that little one takes it's first wobbly attempt at standing. I'm hopelessly addicted.

Sunday morning are my favorite day of the week. Especially Sunday morning when Scotty has worked the night before. He gets home between 7:30 and 8:00 am. I see his headlight shine over the bedroom window. Hear his truck door shut, and bless his heart, his boots clumping up and down the hall as he comes in the house, and pulls on his Carharts so I don't have to go outside and feed, and water the horses. Out he thumps to throw hay to our horses, and to Dave's out back. The water trough the horse share gets filled, the hose unhooked and thrown over a tree limb to be drained so it doesn't freeze, and I'm still in my warm bed dozing on and off till chores are done.

I don't have to get up for work. Teh Spawn doesn't have to be up early anywhere. And I have a wonderful husband who does the morning chores so I can laze around. He comes in and builds the fire back up in the wood stove or splits kindling to start a new one if I let it go out over night. The cats are fed, the dogs and cats have water. He's taken care of the bunnies I have waiting to get butchered today. Then I can get up at my leisure to putter around. We works again tonight, so he's gone to bed for the day.

The house is quiet. The dogs have gone out and established they aren't scared of the neighbors dogs by barking furiously through the field fence before coming back to the porch, peeing on everything the can find on the way. Teh Spawn is still asleep in her bed, hopefully for another hour or so before she want the computer from me. I have a nice big cup of coffee as I view trough everyone's blogs I follow, and compose any thoughts I have for mine. Sunday mornings are perfect.

My blanket is finally finished. I'll have to get a pic of it all done, but Teh Spawn promptly appropriated it for her bed before I had a chance to even cut the loose ends of string from it. My Mom and sisters did see it from Arizona and Arkansas from the blog. I now have two orders for more.  :)  Heather wants one for her son Mark. He's little still, so I don't have make it quite as big. Amye wants one for her bed. Our Mommom used to make them for us kids, and for the first few grand kids before she passed away. I still have the one she made for Teh Spawn, complete with a cigaret burn and all. So I guess the job is mine now. I already have a color scheme in mind for Mark's blanket. I have some cream, a changing blue/brown/tan/cream, and a light grey fleck left over from various odds and ends I played with last year. For Amye I told her to pick some colors and send me some yarn. I now have to remember how many rolls it took me though to do mine. If need be she can send me the colors she wants to get me started and I can go from there.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Vacuum Sealers

I am the proud new owner of a FoodSaver Vacuum Sealer for food storage. While in Boise over the weekend we were admiring my Father-in-laws unit he just got from Costco. There was a $20 off deal at the register. Scotty was talking to him about how we were wanting one, and had been researching different brands and models. So off to Costco we went. We'd let our card expire last year, but Grampa has one. We picked up the unit, and a box of rolled create your own bags, with a set of pre-cut ones. The best part, my amazing Father-in-Law paid for it when we got to the register. We had just enough money to get it from the extra money from Scott working Xmas day. Grampa put it all on his card though and told us not to worry about it. How stinkin great is that.

I promptly went to Winco Mon after work and grabbed some meats on sale. Hamburger in 1.5 pound packages that were so many $ off, to be used to froze that day, a large package of chiccken breasts that got divided into three breasts each, a three pack of pork roasts. The sealer was easy to use. Worked just great.

I also got a use or freeze $'s off tri tip roast that I made into beef stew lastnight.
2 lbs cubed beef
Half a can of diced tomatoes with onion and garlic
1/2 c flour and 3 tbs
2 tsp seasoned salt
2 tsp black pepper
5 med potatos
5 lrg carrots
2 minced cloves of garlic
2-1/2 cups chicken stock
2 dashes papricka
1/2 med onion diced
4 tbsp oil

Heat half the oil in a pan on med high. Sift 1/2 cup flour and seasoned salt together. Dredge the beef in flour and brown in pan in lots. Add more oil as the beef and flour soak it up. Toss the beef in the crockpot as it browns. Add remaining ingredints minus the 3 tbs flour to the crockpot and cook on low for 6 hours. After 6 hours mix the 3 tbs of flour and enough water to disolve it. Set the crockpot to high and add the flour/water mixture. This will thicken your stew. After 15 mins, you're done.

Don't forget to add the onion and carrot ends to the ziplock baggie in your freezer for stock later. The carrot and potatoe peeling go into the worm box. My left overs I set in plastic containers in the freezer. This afternoon I'll fill the sink with hot water, set the containers in for about 5 mins to loosen the contents, then vcuum seal them. I freeze them in protions small enough to send with Scott for work lunches.

I also got busy on making things for breakfasts so I don't keep stopping at Maverick every morning and spending a fortune every morning on coffee and breakfast sandwiches. I got giant croisants, cooked a bunch of eggs and put together sandwiches with ham and cheese for me. Scott got breakfast burritoes with diced potatoes, sausage, scrambled eggs, and cheese.

Horses got wormed Mon. I brought home two rabbitts from a co-worker. They are two bucks, 15 weeks old. I figure I should see if I can slaughter, process, and cook them into something edible before I get a bunch of rabbitts to raise. And they were free. Can't beat that with a stick.

I'm working on a blanket. My first crocheted blanket. It's my first big project ever. It's from the yarn Scott's mom sent home to me. It's almost done. I had to make it beig enough to fit Scott. First it started as a rug. Just a rug to put in front of the fireplace. I already have a hand woven rug there from Peru. And then I realized the one I have is natural fiber, and does't burn. The yarn I have is acrylic and will melt and go up like dry grass. So It decided it wanted to be a throw blanket. I was getting somewhere on it finally and Scott really liked it. He liked the colors and remarked how nice it would look on the bed. Our Queen sized bed. And how he's 6ft plus. So off we went with round and round and round crochetting. It may now lay over the sides like a queen sized comforter, but it wil cover the whole top of the bed when finished. I have one more row of double crochets around three and a half sides, and I'm DONE!

And just because I love this little pot. I keep water in it as a stemer to add some humidity to the house in the winter.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

I promise pictures tomorrow

My game finally came today!!!  SQUEE!! /happydance. I was out in the front yard tearing into the vaccuume. I sucked up so many danged pine needles from the xmas tree. I literally sweept up the carpet after I took everything off and set it out side. I got two Heaping dustpans completly, can't get anything more in, Full of needles before I went after it with the sucker. And... ever since then, the vaccuume doesn't want to suck very hard. I knew it needed cleaning out at any rate, but that requires going outside and tearing it all appart. I got the hoses all off, got all the needles, and small twigs out that were stuck inside. Teh Spawn likes to just run over the carpet in ftont of the wood stove without sweeping up all the peices of bark first, and they get lodged in the hoses. The pre filters and the filters were filled with super fine dust. Everything got a thorough cleaning.

While I was sitting out in the dead grass I saw a UPS truck slow down out at the end of the road. Excitement!! And then no. The turned into the enighbors drive. Excitement again as they backed out and turned around. Then no as it looked like they were stopping at Roger's across the street. Then THEY CAME DOWN MY DRIVEWAY!! Yay. They had my game. It's the collectors edition with all the goodies. The statue is already unpacked and sitting on my dresser with the rest of the Star Wars sillyness I already have. I was able to load into the game relatively easy since I'd already done whe down load previously, and had just a minor patch from the other day. Rick had saved my name for me, so he logged in, deleted the toon with the name Rhaige, and I got to play with the character creation page. There is never enough options for me. But she looks ok. I got into the guild in game. Everyone was excited to finally see me. I played here and there for a bit through the night, and I think I'm lv 5 when I logged out.

I started my worm bin today. I've been reading about vermicomposting for a while now. I have lots of paper products like used old phone books, junk mail. We make at least a pot of coffee a day, and I can use all the grounds and filters. And Leaves, do I have leaves out under the trees. We had an old plastic box that the kids were using in their forts. I just need to find the lid. So I put a carboard down in the bottom, added my leaves, a few chunks of horse poo, shreded paper, coffee grounds that I've been saving, the top to the jack o lantern from the compost pile, and a old orange that was going flat in the fridge. Leave it set damp for a week, and then add the worms. Only I don't have worms, nor have I ordered them. Red wrigglers are what they sell for bair right? We're gonna try a few. If not, I will order a pound of worms with my next check. My flower bed is going to love me. DH protested, loudly about having worms in his kitchen. He's worried about the smell. So the bin is in the laundry room, and if it become a problem, I'll move it out to the garage.

I spent the rest of the day looking at goats for sale online, and working on my blanket. I AM going to finish it. It will be the first big project I finish. I did scraves and hats lastyear. I started about a billion granny squares, and promptly lost where I left the bag before I got to put them together.

Sunday, January 1, 2012

The great goat debate

I want a goat. Actually I want like two or three goats. Goats do better if they have friends. We had goats when I was a kid. Toggenburgs. They were big goats. My Aunt raised pygmys when we lived in Arizona. The pros and cons that just keep running through my mind though. I don't mind sending bucklings to freezer camp. I just have to make sure I can cook them so my family will eat them.  I really want dairy goats. The minis need less feed and produce more milk per pound of food. But I want a Big goat. Nubians. But do I want to be tied to the house every day she's being milked? I can separate the kids at night and milk only in the mornings, but it's Every day without fail. I have to be here, have to be awake the same time every morning. Before I go to work, good weather or bad. Can I find a friend that is willing to come over, milk, and turn every one out together, then separate at night?  When we were kids, I'm pretty sure we just threw the goats hay, and whatever grass they ate from the yard. Now I'm looking at grains, and free choice minerals for a milking goat. Pens, and fencing, and shelter, and a milking stand, and ..... But I really like the idea of having goats. I have scenes and scenarios running through my head, and have feelings attached to the pictures, and I don't even have a goat yet. I would put them out under the stand of trees. Add another strand of hot fence to what is already out there along the short pasture. Have to run three strands across the front next to the round pen, reinforce over by Rebecca's property. And Scott want to put the pig pen over there. The goats could browse to their hearts content on the grasses, and trees growing there. Eat down all the new starts of cottonwoods I go out and haul up by the roots every year. Take over a corner of Scots garage for my milking stand. But then I have to be committed to sweeping out the goat berries every day. If they get out they will decimate the garden I have planned for the new year. I don't want to have a buck on my property so I will have to find one that belongs to a disease free herd that I can borrow on a moments notice. Goats are noisy. They like to talk to you, to each other, to the birds flying over heard. They are so entertaining to watch though. Especially the kids, jumping and butting, and bouncing around sideways. I already have horses I'm tied to the property with. I can always have the neighbor zip over, throw some hay in the winter, or just make sure the water tanks are full in the summer. I can still go away over night, or even up to a week I've had Andrea keep an eye on them for me.Goats I think are going to take a little more attention. This isn't even close to the thoughts I chase around inside my head about the chickens though.  :)


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