No bunnies, but plenty of turkeys!
Friday, March 29, 2013
The day started off with a beautiful colorful sunrise.
By early evening, Glenn announced that he saw a black spot in a far field. Binoculars verified…our first calf had arrived.
This calf is from one of our older black Angus cows. Not a red calf, but half South Poll.
Then, as Glenn was leaving to go out, he called me over to see yesterday’s newborn lamb. He/she (we still have not determined the sex) was right next to the house resting. Its mama was nearby keeping a protective watch.
Wednesday, March 27, 2013
Yesterday, we sold the last of our 2012 lambs.
And today, the first 2013 lamb arrived…perfect timing as ‘they’ say.
And, as always, the little one is so cute. This lamb has similar coloring as the mama ewe - mostly white with black. Glenn likes the ‘all white’ sheep and I prefer a bit of contrast.
We have not determined the sex yet.
We have determined that our lambing season has begun!
Note: The lambing season was to begin on or about April 9th. Mother Nature always has her own ideas.
Tuesday, March 26, 2013
The most recent snow is melting slowly since the air temperatures remain on the cool side.
I went out to fill the birdfeeders which empty daily. My birds are a hungry bunch.
Just goes to show that I have to keep constantly alert, my eyes open and roaming, to notice the little things. I love to discover the little things!
Also, not only was I surprised to see this plant in bloom but I was surprised to see ants crawling around the blooms.
Monday, March 25, 2013
Saturday, March 23, 2013
Earlier this month, my friend Maryann, who lives in Illinois, sent me some tomato seeds. She expected me germinate them, nurture them, then plant them in my garden. And, I will.
I still have time. I do, I really do!
I did not have any good soil in which to start the seeds. Yesterday, I finally got out (you know I am a hermit) with my friend Ann. We went to lunch and a movie, and had time to make a stop for my soil.
Finally, having my soil, I was able to plant the seeds.
I took 12 cups from my stash of nearly a million styrofoam cups (Glenn is an iced tea addict and I am a pack rat) and recycled them into pots. I cut the cups down, filled them with soil, planted each cup with 3 seeds, labeled each cup, covered the cups with plastic wrap to help retain the moisture and, lastly, laid a newspaper on top. I believe most seeds germinate better in the dark.
Am I crazy to try to start plants from seeds so close to planting time? No way…tomatoes like the heat and the real heat will not arrive until June. I have plenty of time to raise hearty and healthy tomato transplants.
What is crazy are the varieties Maryann sent my way: Beefsteak - OK, a regular variety; Purple Russian - an atypical garden variety; and lastly, Depp’s Pink Firefly. Yep, you read that right. I repeat...Depp’s Pink Firefly. Yes, I am talking veggies here, not insects.
What the heck is a Depp’s Pink Firefly Tomato? I have no idea, but when they ripen you will be sure to see them. And, I will let you know how they taste.
Saturday, March 16, 2013
I have been so busy working inside on a multitude of projects that my outside time has been very limited. (I am sure my regular readers can tell by my lack of blog posts over the past months.)
Today, I made the extra effort to set aside my inside tasks so that I could take the dogs for a short walk. They love their walks and I need the exercise.
The very first signs of spring-around-the-corner in my flower beds are a bunch of daffodils that bloom just beyond my kitchen window. It is a wonderful place because I can enjoy them frequently as I always seem to be washing dishes.
The second is a small cluster of snowdrops. I did not plant the snowdrops, but they are growing in a fairly new bed (approx. 10 years old) to the garden. One early spring day I just noticed the delicate white flowers and I have been on the lookout with excitement every year since. In fact, it was several years after seeing that first snowdrop that I realized that the snowdrops had the brilliant green centers. I had read about that interesting little fact in one of my Gladys Taber’s books. So now, I make a point of getting down on hands and knees to make sure I enjoy those green gems hiding under the pure white petals.
Suddenly, I heard a large rumble in the near distance. The sunny and blue sky became dark very rapidly. Within moments of stepping inside the house, the clouds unleashed a terrific downpour complete with forceful winds.
I am grateful that Jake and I are taking short walks.
The sun returned just as quickly as it had left.
|the sun returned, drops of rain continued dripping from the branches|
|a puddle in my lawn where there usually is no puddle|
because the rain fell so fast
Spring shower? I wish...snow is forecast for tomorrow and Monday - ugh!
Thursday, March 7, 2013
So, I got on Ebay and ordered those two items from Three Oaks Farms in New York, as in state; and within a short two days, I received them. Immediately, I just had to try this cheese.
I used 1 gallon of store-purchased 2% milk; and, the results were fabulous. Next time, I would like to try whole milk to see if the flavor increases.
However, the results with the 2% were successful and quite tasty. I could continue to replicate my first attempt with no changes and be completely satisfied.
|just add a label and it would like store-bought|
The biggest surprise, to me, is that making this cheese is so easy. And, I will be making mozzarella regularly.
Glenn and I ate the cheese sliced with and without crackers. The taste is so good, I would have to think twice about using it in my cooking; somehow, this would seem to be a waste of good cheese.
I will let you know, though, that this cheese took me longer than touted 30 minutes. Now, remember, this was my first attempt. I was going back and forth between stove and recipe often.
How long did it take? Well, I hate to admit that my 30-minute mozzarella took two hours; but, two hours well spent!
And, I repeat, I will be making this cheese often…it is that good!
Wednesday, March 6, 2013
The snow has arrived. And, just as it stopped falling, it began to melt. I am guessing the 12+ inches that piled up will not last long.
I did enjoy watching the birds all day hang out in the branches of the silver maple tree growing just beyond the living room window. They were also near the feeder, which still contained food, but for hours they seemed content to just take up residence on a branch and chill.
Earlier in the morning, the feeder was surrounded with red-winged blackbirds. Now, that was as sight as I do not recall this species visiting any time prior. As I tried to sneak out onto the deck to take a photo, they all fled in flight, leaving the feeder availble to the waiting chickadees, cardinals and a sapsucker or two. Blue Jays and mourning doves joined the group and all seemed to get along even when those red-wings returned.
Suddenly, I realized I still had my plastic snowflake decorations hanging from each window. I put these decorations out with the Christmas paraphernalia in December, but these gems continue to grace my living room, dining room and kitchen windows usually through the end of February when the threat of additional snowstorms regularly ceases.
These plastic snowflakes were one of my Mother’s traditional holiday decorations. My earliest recollection of them is from home movies; my Mother had hung these snowflakes from the ceiling of the basement for a family gathering. I do not recall if I was even born yet, which makes these plastic relics nearing 60 years old. Most still have their original hanging thread which is a very thin wire coated with a thin, green cloth.
One of the best things about these snowflakes, even though they are plastic, is that they catch the sunlight and create rainbows. A few days back as I was reading a book, I enjoyed a full rainbow revealed across the page - each rainbow color (red,orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo, violet) distinct. A smile was revealed across my face.
However, today Glenn gave an unassuming warning to pack those snowflakes away. He did not want to pronounce that he would like more snow. Glenn is ready for spring!
So, once again, I say goodbye to a family treasure as I carefully wrap each snowflake between tissue paper before boxing them up.
And, before long, I will be enjoying them again!