Wednesday, October 9, 2013

New baby on the farm...hee haw!

Honestly, what is cuter than a baby donkey? She is such a cuddle bug. Mom and baby are doing well.

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

No biscuit for me...

Even at 6 months our wee farmer is showing a distinct personality, and making it very clear what his likes and dislikes are.

This photo says it all! 


I was asked recently how I grow my sprouts, so I thought I would share.

Sprouting is an easy and healthy way to add fresh greens and vitamins to your diet. Plus it's something you can do even if you live in a tiny city apartment!

First you need some good sized mason jars, cheesecloth, elastic bands and sprout seeds. You can buy sprout seeds online. I like broccoli, onion and watercress. But there are all sorts available if you google sprout seeds.

I used three kinds this time. I picked these up at home depot in the seed department. 

The mustard should be interesting!

Next. Put the seeds in the jar and then cover the top of the jar with a double layer of cheesecloth and use the elastic band to secure it. 

Now fill the jar with water until the seeds are completely covered and leave it on your window ledge for 24 hours.

For me that was until suppertime the next day. I like to time it to suppertime because then I remember to rinse my sprouts. 

And that's what you do. Every 24 hours fill the jar with water, swirl it around and drain it out.  The goal is to wet the seeds. 
It is important to tilt the jar so that the seeds are not sitting in water. I forgot to do that with the broccoli seeds this time and they went rancid. :(

Here they are on day two.

And day three

See how wet the broccoli were? They are the one on the left. Oops. Always tilt your jar. 

Now day 5...

And day 6. This is the onion.

Use them in salads, wraps, or just eat them! They are nice and crunchy, and really yummy. 

Happy sprouting!

Monday, June 17, 2013

Super simple supper

Remember, my personal motto is "look like Martha Stewart in half the time". So I was really excited to try this pot roast recipe.

You start with a roast. I didn't have one. However I did have two fairly thick cuts of beef in the freezer. We had a quarter cow delivered from a local farmer, and I still don't know what each cut is called. Regardless, they went in the crockpot. I added baby potatoes and carrots.

Now this is the super simple magic part. You take three packets - one reduced salt brown gravy, one ranch dressing and one country herb.
I only had turkey gravy so I used that - which means mine will be very salty. Oh well. 

Sprinkle the packets over the roast. 

Add about an inch of water. Cook on low for about 6-7 hours.

The roast will be yummy and the gravy is awesome.

Super simple supper!

Friday, June 7, 2013

Garden season begins

You really have to like working in the soil to be an effective gardener. I find the best time of day is early morning, despite the fact that the Mosquitos will eat you alive. 

I am trying to plant things that will do well in our small farm store - zucchini, cucumber, carrots. I am even trying potatoes this year.  The trouble is that I am quite enjoying myself, and next year when my mat leave is over I am going to miss having this time to garden.  I just hope I can keep it up.

The raised beds make the world of difference. Things are growing in leaps and bounds and covering them with greenhouse plastic gave me a good head start.

This is our raspberry and strawberry patch. If the birds don't eat them we will have a good yield this year.

And yes, that is one gigantic happy rhubarb! I can't wait to make rhubarb pies!

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Market Sign is almost done!

This has been the longest project ever - but I am really happy with the results. 

I just finished putting a coat of clear varnish on them to seal them and give some UV protection. I used a spray can varnish simply because it's easy and there is less clean up! 

I then began my next sign - I think I am addicted. :)

I used a piece of old barn board, and wooden letters that I got at Wallymart. They were only $1.00 a letter! So this was a cheap sign to make.

The store is coming is a sneak peak. It's still got some finishing touches before its done.

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Market Venture - Sign making part two

This project is taking a little longer than I thought, but I am quite pleased with the results.

I printed out my words, taped them on the boards with painters tape and used a sharp pointed pen to trace on top of them pressing firmly on each letter.

This is what it looked like when I lifted the stencil.

There was an imprint of each letter. I then used a black sharpie to outline the back lettering and a white gel pen for the white lettering.

This part took a little patience.

The white gel pen was a bit tricky, but worked well enough.

Coco kept me company - and supervised. (ps. That's our new chalk wall in behind him)

And then the little guy woke up! So I will have to start painting tomorrow. 


Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Market Store Venture

We have decided to open a small market store to sell our eggs and produce.  It's quite a venture - but there's no time like a mat leave to start something new!

Sadly for my better half I have spent a lot of time browsing Pintrest (those 3am feedings haven't been so bad).  So my version of what the store should look like is Pintrest worthy. After all, if it's a country store it should be charming.

I envision a barn red store with cute flower boxes and a tin roof. We will see if he can deliver.

My job is to make signs. I found this one on Pintrest of course:

I am going to try and make a copycat. I picked my colors and set to work.

The first coat looked pretty good!  But since it's going to be outside I thought a second coat would be a good idea. I am using Behr paint and primer in one, in outdoor flat finish.  It goes on really well and I liked how thick the paint is, the colour is also nice and vibrant.
I then had to call it a day because the little guy woke up from a nap. Not like the old days where I could finish a project in one day! LOL!  Ah well, he's worth it.

Monday, May 13, 2013

Seriously good cookies

As a new mum, I am already looking for short cuts. I need recipes that make me look like Martha half the time.

Actually, more like a quarter of the time.

Today the wee farmer didn't want to nap. He was cranky and tired and fussy.

But I still managed to make these.

They were seriously good! And definitely something I will make again.

Easiest Fudgy Nutella Cookies
Yield: 12

1/2 cup + 1 tbsp all purpose flour
1 large egg
1 cup of Nutella
1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips

1. Preheat oven to 350F. Combine flour, egg and Nutella in a large bowl and mix together with a spoon until dough comes together and no flour lumps remain. Stir in chocolate chips until evenly mixed into the dough.
2. Make dough balls, about 1 1/2 inch in diameter. Place on cookie sheets, about 2 inches apart. Press down slightly on dough so the dough balls are more like very very thick round disks rather than perfectly round balls. Smooth edges that may have cracked from the pressure of pushing down on the balls, so that you have thick round smooth disks.
3. Bake for about 10 minutes. Cookies should be mostly set, but might be slightly still soft in the middle. Let cookies cool on rack until completely set. Enjoy while still slightly warm or after completely cooled.

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Goodbye winter coats!

I always have a good giggle when we shear the sheep. I swear they stand around and look at each other thinking "Matilda, is that you?"

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Lamb losses

It doesn't matter how long you farm, it's still sad when you lose a lamb.

Late last night we had one that was very weak. So I bought her up to the house and she became a kitchen lamb.

I set to work with a blow dryer in oder to gently warm her. She was covered in meconium, so it was a sticky messy job to get her dry. I knew she would make it when at one point she lifted her head to look at me - she was doing her best to come around.

I then managed to get several syringes of colostrum into her, she readily sucked at the syringe by the last one.

Then it was into the warming box.

For the rest of the night I fed her and checked on her. By morning, I was greeted with a wagging tail and a smiling face.

Worth every messy moment.

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Is it spring?

Lambing with a ten week old in the house is a little more hectic than usual. I am trying my best to pitch in and help, but with a crying infant on my hip sometimes getting supper on the table is the best I can manage.

Still, it's a sure sign that warmer days are coming!

Friday, February 22, 2013

Cranial Osteopath

We just returned from the osteopath visit.


She showed us how all of the muscles down one side of his body are tight, thus causing him to arch his spine in a "banana" shape. He favours one side of his head when sitting or lying down, and she showed us how tight the muscles are in his neck. This "banana" shape he puts himself into squishes up his tummy on one side, and she said it would impact his digestion.

She then worked on him, it was all very gentle.

All I know is that since our visit he has been calm and happy, and just went down for nap so peacefully when we got home.

So we will see, we have two more visits next week. Thank goodness for health coverage, she is an RMT so it is covered by our plan. C says he sees a difference after just this one visit.

I feel awful that we left it this long. Poor wee boy was in pain. I highly recommend an osteopath to anyone with a colicky baby!

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Purple crying

At first I thought "wow, I knew babies cry but am I seriously such an ineffective mum?" but then my friends in the UK sent me this site and I realized perhaps it's just a phase my baby is going through.

He sort of has a routine of sleep, breastfeed, short period of contentment,and then cry. And then it begins again.

Sure there are times during the day like right now when he is content for a bit. He is currently in his new Snugglebunny swing, and he can be soothed in it for at least 30 minutes. But then there are also days where nothing we do makes him happy. No amount of swaddling, swinging, shooshing, cooing, cuddling, breastfeeding, etc makes him happy. What has seemed to work is increasing his sleep time. I keep reminding myself he was born three weeks early so perhaps he needs a little more sleep.

I am going to take him to a cranial osteopath this Friday in the hopes it will help.

I can't travel in the car by myself. It's a two man job with one of us in the back seat soothing him and trying to comfort him. If we don't he screams to the point he pukes. Once we arrive somewhere, he is happy for a short while after he eats and then the fussies start again.

He's gassy, and no amount of Ovol, gripe water or BioGia seems to help much. He hates the soother and rejects it. I am sure the gassiness is contributing to the fussies. We do a lot of tummy massage and movement to get him to pass gas. Man can this kid pass gas! He sounds like a 40 year old man.

The pediatrician ruled out reflux, and says "he's just fussy. He will outgrow it." My motherly instincts tell me that something is bothering him - I just have to try and figure out what it is? Or it could just be purple crying- and he will outgrow it. In which case I will resign myself to being housebound until he is 4 months old.

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

On being a mama

I am so loving being a mama. I am exhausted, I could use oodles more sleep, but he's so darn cute he makes me feel alive.

We are home and establishing routines. Daddy has proven to be the most amazing diaper changer - even at 3 am he gets it on right!

The days and nights tend to blur together. I have no idea what day it is - but I am loving the cuddles and the smell of his sweet head in my arms.

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Welcome wee new years boy!

Well life never goes as expected does it? The day started normally enough. We had decided to go pick up hay, and so we packed some goodies and a water bottle and set off north.

I recall feeling a bit queer, but I chalked it up to the bouncing of the pickup.

We stopped on route at the Timmies and I got a muffin and a tea. Thinking back, I wasn't hungry for the muffin - unusual for a pregnant woman.

We arrived at the farm to pick up the hay, and it was then I began to feel nauseous. I chalked it up to a long car ride and pregnancy. I got out of the truck and the cool air was refreshing. However I couldn't shake the nausea. Loaded up and ready to head for home, I knew something was wrong.

The return trip was awful, and about halfway home I called the midwife. I was explaining how I felt, when I realized I was going to be sick. Handing the phone to my better half I then proceeded to throw up all over his truck. (poor man!)

She asked us to come to emergency. For the remainder of the trip, I focused on not passing out. I had the chills, nausea and was burning up. This was not just pregnancy!

Upon arrival at the hospital, they whisked me off to obstetrics - where a decision was made to do a c-section. My fever was 39.2 and the baby was showing distress.

Just like that I was on my way to meet my son!!

It all went well, and it was determined that the flu was the culprit for my illness. Baby and I are now recovering in hospital for a few more days.

He was 3 weeks early but perfect in every way.

He was worth every minute of feeling like crap :)

Welcome wee one! First baby of the year!