Friday, June 24, 2011

I'm a failure at rabbit raising...

I'm so sad. I am failing in the rabbit area. This spring we started out with 21 baby bunnies. I'm down to one. My Breeding Buck died, which is all my fault. I wanted to brood the turkeys in the shed I had the rabbits in over winter. So, I had the Boys pull the rabbit pens out and put them against the shed. I figured it was nice out and they would be fine. Did I think about the fact that they didn't have cover? Nope, never thought that if it rained they would get wet. And it poured. The one set of pens was on the front of the shed and didn't get hit too bad with the rain. But the buck was on the side of the shed, and he got soaked. We came out the next day and he was dead. Then my bunnies started dying, each day another dead bunny. I don't know what happened. We had moved the rabbits into another pen and the goats got into it and ripped the wiring apart. So then I had escaping rabbits. Hubby is working so much he didn't have time or energy to fix them and apparently my attempts were futile. Yesterday morning I went out and found one of my breeding does dead. But she seemed to have a broken back. I don't have a clue how that happened.
I quit. I am finding a happy home or butchering the rabbits I have left and I am not doing this again until I have a proper place and proper housing for them. It's alot of work and money for nothing to show for it. I am going to tag this as experience and move on.
I'm also looking into selling my two dairy goats and two of the kids and using that money to buy one proven milker. I'm feeding two goats to get the same amount of milk one goat should be giving. So if I can sell these goats I can spend the extra money on one with a record of heavy milking. Hubby wants a Saanan or as he says, a white goat with ears.
Farming is challenging. I have a new respect for the "real" farmers who do this on a bigger scale and rely on it to provide for their families. Something always needs to be cleaned or fixed. Feeding has to be measured correctly. Ordering feed has to be done on time, Then there's hoof care and udder care and wings to be clipped Oh My...
I'm tired too tired to sleep and tomorrow will come soon. I'm listing off all the things that need to be done. Barn swept, Milkstand scrubbed, garden weeded, weed eater needs to be run, grass mowed, plus the everyday stuff...
I'm going to try and sleep or I won't have the urge to get stuff done while it's cool in the morning.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Super sticky yummy ribs!

I wish I took pictures but I'm really terrible at it! But our dinner was so good I had to post it! Silly, some may think, but I enjoy cooking and sharing.
What we had, "Country Ribs with Rhubarb BBQ sauce" and Cheesy scallopped potatoes with a mixed lettuce salad w/ tomatoes and sharp cheese.

The country ribs recipe came from Mary at with an adaption of my own.

4lbs country style ribs
1 lemon thinly sliced
1 large onion thinly sliced

1C. chopped rhubarb
2/3C. water
1med onion finely chopped
1t oil
1 garlic clove, minced
1C. ketchup
2/3C packed brown sugar
1/2C dark corn syrup (I used Honey)
2T cider vinegar
2T Worcetershire sauce
1T dijon mustard (I used stone ground dijon)
1-1/2t hot pepper sauce
1/4t salt

1) preheat oven to 450 degreesF
2) Salt ribs placed in a roasting pan. Roast for about 30 minutes. Drain excess fat. Top ribs with lemon and onion slices

3) In a small sauce saucepan, bring rhubarb and water to a boil and then lower heat and simmer until tender, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat and allow to cool slightly. Place the rhubarb in a blender and process until smooth. In the same sauce pan saute the onion in oil and then add the garlic, saute one minute and then add the additional ingredients. Whisk in the rhubarb puree and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 5 minutes.

4) Pour sauce over ribs. Lower the temp to 350. Bake until fork tender, basting every 15 minutes. Total cooking time should be about 2-2 1/2 hours. If sauce get too thick add a little water.

This sauce hits all parts of your tongue. As it roasts with the ribs it gets sticky and candy like. The lemon and onion carmalize and the lemon peels become soft and chewy. YUM! The lemon and rhubarb really cut the sweetness of the brown sugar and honey.

This is my own recipe
Six russett pot. sliced on the mandoline
1/4c flour
1/4c butter
2C. cheddar cheese
2C. milk

Super simple.
preheat oven to 400 degrees F
grease the bottom and sides of a casserole dish (11x7)
layer potatoes, a sprinkling of flour , a handful of cheese. continue layering until you fill the pan or run out of potatoes
dot with butter
pour milk over the top
Cover with foil
bake at 400 for 30 minutes covered.
Uncover and bake until golden brown and tender, about another 10 minutes.

Cheesy and creamy!

I hope you try this out. We enjoyed it and I had the time to roast this.I have a summer kitchen to cook in so it wasn't so bad. If you have air conditioning you'll be fine but if not I'd wait for a cool rainy day to make this!

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Making Kefir

My girlfriend, Chelle, gave me some kefir grains and a paper telling me how to make this fermented milk product. Kefir is made by pouring milk over the "grains"(they look kinda like tapioca,just not round)covering the jar or crock with a cloth and letting it sit out on the counter for up to 24 hours. After 24 hours you strain the kefir through a sieve saving the grains to make another batch. The result is a thick buttermilk texture liquid. It's put in the fridge to chill. It smells yeasty and has a tangy taste that I really can't drink alone. I was told it's an "acquired" taste.
Ummm it's just gross plain. I made smoothies sweetened with agave nectar or honey. The kids loved it! We made peanut butter- banana w/honey and strawberry w/agave and then peanut butter with chocolate syrup.
Kefir is so easy to make and you continue to use the same grains. The grains start to multiply and after a few weeks, making kefir everyday, they should grow enough to have a cup full of grains. I use about a 1/4c and that will ferment 1qt of milk. So with more grains you could do more milk at a time or divide it up and share with your friends like Chelle did with me!
Kefir is very high in probiotics and cleans out the toxins in your system. Depending on your home temperature and air quality, it may take less then 24 hours. You just have to make a few batches to see what works for you. In my home, with no air conditioning, it takes about 18 hours to get a thick creamy kefir. I have also noticed that it thickens in the fridge, so if you strained it too early it will thicken up with time.
As I am more of an instant gratification person, I like making kefir. It's simple and neat and tidy. No mess! In fact I am having trouble because I'm using up all my milk! I wish I had these grains a few months ago!
I'm still looking up more recipes to use it up. But smoothies are great right now. I would like to make ice cream and was looking to see if I could use it in baking.

Friday, June 3, 2011

New business Venture

I took a step,um more of a leap. I signed on to become a Lilla Rose consultant. Lilla Rose offers hair accessories as well as eye glass chains and jewelry. As soon as I get my new flexi's I will have my daughter take pics. I have alot of hair. Long, thick, curly hair.I usually wear it in a messy bun because I like it out of my face and cooking. Hubby wishes I wore it down more because he LOVES my hair. BUT all my barettes would break or I'd get a headache because they were so heavy duty they were HEAVY.
I am also trying to be more feminine the flexi's are light weight and heavy duty made with piano wire. There are so many pretty designs some more modern then others some extra beaded. I like pretty but practical. You should have seen me picking out glasses today! Pretty but practical...
So if you are interested here is my website.

I thought this would be fun. I could try out new hairstyles and maybe make a little extra cash on the side.

Thursday, June 2, 2011


MY eyes are watering, my throat tickles, my nose is leaking... Allergies. I can't breathe or see. Typing is fun! The past two weeks have been busy busy busy. Thankfully school is out on Tuesday and baseball is over On June 11th. No more running, no more harping on grades...summer. Now I get to harp on gardening chores and animal care. My kiddos love me.
Had to buy a live animal trap...Bunnies are everywhere. They figured out how to shimmy out the food dish!
Hubby worked 195 hours last two weeks. We need the money but nothing else seems to get done.
I went to Pap's today and came home with 25 tomato cages, four boxes of old canning jars with glass lids, a pitch fork, a handle, an old tool box and a few scrub brushes! Hmmm... I'll have to go take pictures and update my blog post.
Turkeys are on their way next week. That's why I needed the pitch fork. I have to clean out another pen. Yeah me. I hope this nice breezy weather continues so I can get it done.
I am about ready to plant my garden. I just need to rototill a bit more.
Well, I'm off to check chores and water...

One baby bunnie caught in the trap, six more to go!

All the "goodies" I got from Pap!