Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Poleshed Party

There's a new pole shed on GrassStain Farm and the cows and sheep are loving it! It was built in 1.5 days with a roof and one side enclosed. We put it perpendicular to the east fence so the dry cows and steers and sheep can eat from the north and the wet cows eat from the south. Their hay now stays dry so its better to eat and there is less loss.

Because good quality hay is one of Bob's passions, he is very excited about this hay shed.

Here is our new cow, Ghirardelli, as seen from the top of the bales.

There are more than cows partying at the poleshed. Karl found a bit of fun with an audience watching on.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Rooftop turkey

They're gone. I'm a little lonely. We used to be greeted with eagerness and enthusiasm whenever we stepped out the door or drove in the yard. They'd come running, glad to see us. Hoping we brought them a little treat.

And now they're gone. I'm a little lonely. It's one of the occupational hazards of being a sustainable grass farmer. Some livestock become more than a part of the seasonal function of farm production. The turkeys had become entertainment and enjoyment; they had become a part of our lives as we interacted with them. And now they're gobbling is gone.

But alas! Life goes on and we know that while they were here a short time, it was a good time for them as well as us. They were happy birds allowed to roam and grub where they pleased, wandering through the orchard and pasture alike, roosting on the highest poles and fences as they chose. Their life was good and now their purpose is being fulfilled in becoming healthy, good-tasting dinner to local families. The cycle of life continues.

What about that rooftop turkey? Well, one got away from us this morning and as we drove away, he was perched on the rooftop overlooking the business below. The workers say he'll probably come down later today; if not, I guess we're short one bird. Now its time to order more for next year.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Lamb Meat available

Just letting you know. . . .we still have lamb meat available. Main inventory is chops, shoulder roasts, and leg of lamb. email if interested.

I fixed a lamb roast from a simple recipe in Mark Bittman's book. Very good. It all went at the family supper and everyone ate it enthusiastically.

Bubba owns the farm

The farm animals are all adjusting to the new fall season which brings some changes in feed and shelter. The large turkeys continue to roam but once or twice have gone outside the farm boundaries and down the road a fair piece. We try to encourage hanging out at home a bit more by running them into the north pasture, sprinkling corn around, and letting them hunt and peck there. They can fly over the fence but sometimes forget that until absolutely necessary.

The round feeder has been placed in the middle of the hay barn thus filling the south doorway and allowing milk cows to eat from the south and the dry cows to eat from the north (inside). The negative consequence of this otherwise good arrangement is that Bubba the ram can get out of the north pasture. He just jumps into the hayfeeder, eats a bit, and then jumps out the other side. From there its a simple trot through the main barn, an easy push of the doors, and he's free to roam about wherever he pleases. Of coarse, at this time of the year -- sheep breeding season -- he pleases to hang out near the ewes who are stuck down in paddock #1. For the first few days he paced outside the fence keeping his eye on the ladies. When he realizes he, too, is stuck on the wrong side, he'll take a break to gobble some turkey feed or check out the new hay bale. Eventually, Karl or Bob call him over to the gate and let him back in the north pasture.

Today I saw Bubba posted outside paddock #1 as usual for the morning, but was surprised to later see him back inside trotting over for a drink of water in paddock #2. Now how did he get back in? You can't push the barn doors IN, they only can be pushed out. Hmmmm. That ram! We're a bit perplexed....and amused. He's a pretty smart sheep.

The farm strategy here is that the ewe ladies keep the ram from wandering too far (unlike the turkeys) and Bubba will get his chance to do his job starting Thanksgiving Day. That's when we'll run him into Paddock #1 and 5 monthes later little lambs will begin to arrive. Not too soon so they have to contend with cold and snow but just in time to enjoy warm weather and new grass to eat. Aah. Life is good here on GrassStain Farm.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Autumn Inspirations

The beautiful weather and unusual warm days have been calling me outside to wander the farm. I've walked around the 20 acre perimeter several times checking out the land, fence, trees, paths, and so on. As any farmer will tell you, the work is never done. But I'm also encouraged to see how much we have accomplished in just two growing seasons.

When Bob is back to normal hours after the harvest craze, I've got lots of questions for him. Lots of possible pictures to paint for him to weigh in on. Should we plow up the few acres up north that run full-width east/west to level out the land and reseed grass/legumes? Why or Why not? Are there other smaller areas we should consider fencing in for more paddocks to use with intensive grazing? Any areas to burn? Do we clean up any of the fallen trees in the 'forest' or just let them all decay away?

I'm like a toddler asking my basic questions to the oh-so-wise parent. I'm sure Bob will patiently answer and guide me in my grass farming adventure. In the meantime, I'll continue to walk and dream as long as the mild weather hangs around. Its good to dream.

Monday, October 4, 2010

Sample the Farm tour

We had a wonderful group of friends and neighbors at GrassStain Farm yesterday to "Sample the Farm" which included a tour followed by scrumptious appetizers made by our skilled chef, Jason Thompson.

The ingredients for most of the menu came from our farm: ground lamb and ground pork in the meatballs, pork spareribs, leg of lamb with a delicious squash whip, ham/pickle skewers, eggs, milk, cream, butter, apples, and garden produce all mixed in somewhere. Other ingredients were gathered from nearby producers such as the NY Strip Steak and blue corn from Lynn Brakke Organic Farm, pickles and butternut squash from Darin. Desserts of pumpkin cheesecake and fudge were made by Amy K. (chocolate was not locally-grown!)

The Buffet Table was quite a feast to behold but quickly emptied as guests went back for seconds and thirds. I forgot to get a picture of it full; we had very few leftovers.

For most of our guests, it was the first time tasting lamb. We heard many good comments and have new customers to buy lamb meat.

I was most impressed with the creativity of our chef Jason as he took the local food I gave him and turned it into fun new dishes to eat. He inspired me to try new recipes in our home with the seasonal produce that's so abundantly available right now. (I also have plenty to preserve for the winter months...like apples.)

I had thought my apple variety is so small its a nuisance. Jason used the apples to make bite-size baked apples topped with streusal. It frankly was a favorite of some; guests would walk by the table and pop one in their mouth.

Blue corn polenta topped with a veggie roux.
I'm afraid I didn't write down all that Jason did so I'm recording this by memory. I hope its fairly accurate. It was very freeing to turn the cooking for the day over to the capable hands of a local chef so I could focus on the farm tour and guests.
I highly recommend Jason!

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

We're in business!

The lamb meat has arrived in our freezer, and I'm ready to deliver it to yours. This is so exciting for me. The harvest is in, and its market time. Emails went out to this morning; phone calls are flying and already two orders are bundled ready to go.

It hadn't fully dawned on me until today that I'm doing the same job my husband does, only much smaller. At the organic farm that employs him, Bob also grows animals. However, his are bigger and more of them. But just like me, when they are ready for market his animals go to the same processor, later he picks up boxes of shrink-wrapped frozen meat, inventories it, takes orders, and then bundles it up and delivers the meat to the customer....with a smile. Just like me!

I'm quite amused at this. I guess Bob's my hero and I want to be just like him. :) Well, maybe not just like him. I'll leave Bob to his cows, and I'll stick to my wonderful little flock of sheep while relying on his wisdom and experience. Of course, he'll always be my hero.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Feast or Fleeced?

I did my research. Read many websites. Collected information. Yep, Icelandic Lambs grow well on grass. In fact, they are best at gaining weight on grass and will be 90-110# in 4 to 5 months. We kept our lambs on mother's milk and grass all summer, and at the appointed time of 5 monthes, we delivered them to the processor knowing we have customers waiting for packages of healthy, tender lamb meat.

Here's where the research hits the pasture. After 5 months, our lambs didn't quite make the 110# target. In fact, they were about half that! Wow! A bit disappointing.

Well, what's a grassfarmer to do? We'll still have good meat to sell this year, albeit much less than hoped for. And next year we have a plan. My husband, the intensive grazer expert, says we'll try putting them on a fresh paddock at least every week. This year we've been able to improve several more paddocks and get them fenced in and ready to be used for intensive grazing purposes next year.

Isn't that what any good farmer says, "There's always next year." In the meantime, I'll still be selling lamb meat in a week or so. You just might want to call sooner since the supply is a little limited.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Tender, mild Lamb Meat

Coming soon to a table near you. . . . delicious, healthy grass-fed lamb!

Our Icelandic lamb meat will be available at the end of September.
First year introductory prices are as follows:
Whole Lamb - $5.00/lb
Leg of Lamb - $6.50/lb
Lamb Chops - $6.50/lb
Lamb Shank - $3.50/lb
Ground Lamb - $3.50/lb

Please email if you wish to order ahead: grass@wtc-mail.net
You'll enjoy this tender, mild lamb on your table this fall.

Flutterings in the pasture

Beauty in the beast! This lovely delicate yellow butterfly is sitting on a very prickly Canandian Thistle, a weed we try to eradicate. We have a large area of this weed north of the paddocks which received a flutter of butterflies earlier this week. We estimate more than a hundred flitting and fluttering from flower to flower.

Aren't they gorgeous?

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Cute Cocoa the Calf

She's looking good!
We try to spend time with Cocoa several times a day so she knows us well and gets used to being handled. Much easier to milk a "pet" cow.

intensive grazing

I do my best at this thing called grass farming, but frankly, I'm quite the novice. My husband, Bob, is a wealth of knowledge and my main advisor. He has an animal science degree from NDSU, been a dairyman for many years, and now uses intensive grazing methods on the organic farm where he works raising grass-fed beef. I have books and magazines, but I like just asking Bob the most. :)

Today I made some shepherding decisions. The sheep have been in paddock #1 for about a month, and its looking pretty chewed down. On the other hand, paddocks 2 and 3 are looking lush with grass and some weeds. This morning saw Elizabeth, Karl and I out with various tools working on the fence line east of the barn. Sheep are quite good at escaping through a less-than-secure fence, and we have several places not very secure.
Karl cut a hog panel, drove two steel posts in and attached the panel to finish off the far east end gap between a gate and the outer fence. (we have a great 6-string barbed fence around the perimeter of the pasture/paddocks.)

Meanwhile, Elizabeth was adding a wire fence (specific kind unknown to me and Bob's not here) to another area, and I drilled some boards to support fence around the waterer that the hogs had torn down last spring.
It was hot but the mosquitos are horrible so we are in long-sleeved shirts and jeans. . .and hoods, too, in Karl's case.

This is a roll of wire fence we found out in the trees. It has come in very handy. The farm had old, wooden fence for horses when we bought the place. It had served well but has now fallen apart and time to replace with something stronger and good for sheep. One day paddocks 2 and 3 will get seperated with a functional fence, too.

The first picture at the top of the blog is the sheep in paddock 1 as I'm circling around them to switch pastures. They got all excited and ran through the gate. About 20 to 30 feet into the new paddock they abruptly stopped and dropped their heads. Aaah. New pasture; life is good.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Cocoa, the heifer calf

Cocoa, the heifer calf, arrived this morning around 5 or 6:00am. When Bob went out to check, he found a wet calf standing by her mama. Hershey does a continuous soft mooing sound so Cocoa will know her call. As of yet, we have not seen the calf sucking so we're keeping an eye on that. They figure it out eventually, but you just want to make sure.

When Karl went out around 8:00 am, Cocoa was already kicking/hopping. They are quick to get moving. We'll be out there a lot with her; the more she knows us the easier she is to handle.

I love watching Bob at these events. He marvels at the new calf, at how the cow knows what to do, moves to protect her calf, moos so the calf knows her. I enjoy that whole scene, too, but Bob just soaks it in at a whole different level, filled with joy and awe.

Saturday, August 14, 2010


Hollyhocks galore on the south side of our home. I read once that in Victorian days, ladies planted hollyhocks around the outhouse to mask it. Then when needing the outhouse, it was more genteel to say, "I'm going to look at the hollyhocks."
Come look at my hollyhocks anytime. Bathroom inside. :)

Aerial Farm View

This is our farm from the air looking NW. It was taken last year; today it would look a little greener especially in the paddocks. The red building towards the top is an old granery now used for storage and plans to install windows for a rustic guest cottage. Just above it (west) is our garden. If photographed today it would be larger and full of corn stalks.
Near the granery is a swingset and in the upper left corner is the orchard. Just looks like a bunch of trees which is also true today. No plums this year. Apples are out there but high up. I heard one guy say he pruned his apple trees so they would grow out instead of up; its easier to reach apples that way. I'm going to have to learn that technique for the new apple trees.
The long silver-roof red barn standing alone is the dairy barn. (see one of the first posts for a closer front view). Off to the right is the hay barn and a small shed for storage or animal shelter. The lonely old garage in the middle is the shop for tools and woodworking with wonderful storage above.
Thats our GrassStain Farm from the air.
Here is a closer look at our home. In the next blog I'll show you the hollyhocks now growing on the southsideof the house. (house faces east)

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Bloomin' Turkeys

Remember the flowers I planted in the tree last May? They have been blooming wonderfully with our humidity and warm days. I need to look for more crevices to fill with unexpected beauty. Sort of like making lemons into lemonade, or something like that.

Tree crevices are not all that's blooming on the farm. The turkeys keep growing. I know I've told you that, but now I have some pictures to prove it.

The lighter colored birds are Blue Slate and the darker are Narragansett. The Blues seem to be a bit hardier as we lost only one of those this year and none last year. Several of the 'gansetts died the first few days, but are all stout and holding their own. Now they just grub around and are making more gobbling noises. If little kids come, I warn the mom about how the turkeys will come running when they see me. It can look awfull daunting to have 16 turkeys your size running full speed right at you. : But once around my feet, they just hang out, bob their heads, peck the ground and wonder if I have feed.
When the turkeys were smaller (poults), the chickens would dash to the turkey feed trough, bully the turkeys away, and eat the feed. Now that the turkeys are same size or even bigger, you'd think they'd stop being pushed around, stand their ground, and let the chickens know whose feed this is! Nope. The turks bolt when the chicks come running. Makes me want to redefine the term "chicken."
And what about "turkey?" Based on their behaviour, I think I'm a turkey when I'm stuck in some old way of thought that's not true anymore, but still restrains me from taking action or moving forward toward a good goal/dream. Gobble, gobble, gobble.
I need to find a new farm animal to identify with :)

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Shepherdess Duties

Today I need to prepare Paddock #1 for the sheep to return to it. Right now they are in the north woods which is several acres of plentiful trees and brush. Hard to find there. Once moved to the paddock, they'll have fresh grass, a shed to hang in and around, and we'll be able to catch them easier when needed. Less stress for all of us.

Also, they will be seperate from Bubba, the ram. The breeding season for sheep starts about late August and runs through the Fall. We don't want little lambs born in the cold February weather, so we'll keep the ram elsewhere until Thanksgiving Day. The lambs start coming mid-April. All of this means we need to prepare the paddock and get them moved in within the month. This year's lambs go to market end of September. Lamb meat, anyone?

I was at a Farmer's Market last week signing up customers for lamb. Some came ecstatic to find local, Icelandic lamb meat; a few ladies politely said they just couldn't eat a cute little lamb. :)

Thursday, July 15, 2010

BH&G Here I come

I'm remodeling the Shop! Well, to say remodel isn't exactly right. Nor can I say redecorate. Nonetheless, the shop is getting a much-needed new look. When we moved in yearend 2008, all the woodworking equipment, tools, and later the tractor all got hung, arranged, stored, etc in the shop as it was. Its a very useful, good building. But ugly!

In May the outside got a facelift with new white siding; now the inside is getting the facelift. The walls have a variety of color and texture along with too many odd, mismatched cupboards and shelves. And Nails! And Screws! All over the place. Karl, my handy-dandy helpful son, and I moved everything away from the north wall and started removing unnecessary things (almost everything) and are painting it white. The walls are chipboard plywood but it still looks better white-washed. It already looks much better, however I doubt Better Homes and Garden will be out soon for a 2-page spread in their next issue. :) I'll call just in case.

I like being organized. I like things to look good. So does Bob. When this shop project is done, I know he will enjoy the look and the functionality so much more. I'll be scoring good wife points on this one!
Sorry, no pics. The camera is at camp with Elizabeth. This weekend we'll catch up.

Saturday, July 10, 2010


The turkeys are growing! For more than a week they've been able to fly over the fence in their coop's backyard, so we just opened the front door and gave them free range of the farm. They move as a pecking mob grubbing up whatever they find worthy. I am recognized as the source of feed; when I come with my "turkey, turkey, turkey" call, the birds answer with gobble, gobble, gobble as they run pell mell to me. Its a frenzy in the small coop pouring feed into the long rectangle metal feeder while they are trying to peck, peck, peck. It is fun to watch their antics and see them grow so fast.

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Gourmet Locavore!

Tonight we reaped a delicious, purely satisfying harvest. Supper consisted of our own farm products, and it made for a great family event. Our cull dairy cow from several months ago provided tenderloin steaks that Karl grilled to perfection. Bob and I walked to the garden and collected new potatoes, a couple radishes, and cherry tomatoes. Elizabeth had lettuce and herbs leftover from yesterdays Farmers Market. We threw the herbs in the food processor with some chicken stock and olive oil (not from our farm) for a tasty, fresh sauce to pour over the potatoes.

To know that this meal came from our own farm just made it tast all the better. And inspires us to press on growing and sharing the good, fresh, nutritious taste of local food

Rock-Pickin' Machine

What is a rock-pickin' machine? On our farm anything with two arms, two legs, and 2 hours to sweat! We continue to develop and improve our paddocks from horse pens into lush green forage pools.. This means clearing out lots and lots of fist-size rocks so the mower doesn't get too chewed up. Two wonderful, hard-working neighbor kids came to help; their willingness and cheerfulness helped make a toilsome job quite doable.

Now the weeds are mowed down. The next step is to drag the paddock and then plant grass. Oops. Before planting grass we'll have to remake the fence to keep the cows out when the newly-planted grass starts growing. Paddock 1 was planted last Fall and is looking much better. The ewes and lambs enjoyed the grass there this Spring.

What does one do with all the picked rocks? The first place they went was filling in large holes left from the old fence we removed last year. It'd be bad for a cow to fall in one and break a leg. Next, a pile got dumbed under a gate where there was a low spot. Sheep would slide under there to get into the paddocks where we didn't want them right now. It seems to be working.

And so a problem in one spot (rocks in paddocks) became a solution in another area. Isn't that how life is? God uses our problems (weaknesses) to do good things. It definately works.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Bloom where you are planted

I was inspired by the creative landscaping I saw at Inspiration Point Bible Camp a few summers ago and decided I could do something similar. I bought flowers and potting soil and headed out to the big hole-in-the-tree.

A little problem arose when filling the tree hole with dirt; the dirt kept falling out. Nearby is our firepit with stacks of logs and sticks. I used small sticks to build a sort of two-tiered wall to hold the dirt. Its been working so far and the flowers are looking bright and colorful inside the dullish tree.

Do you see the wall of sticks? Looks a little like a fort or stockade. It holds well.

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Orchard News

We have a new apple! Just one. But we're thrilled because its from the new tree just planted last month. Last year we hear the MN State berry guy (official title??) say that he plants 2 or 3 new trees every year so we thought we'd do that, too. Mid-May Karl and I drove to the famous Bergeson Nursery at Fertile, MN (near Bob's family farm) to buy 3 apple trees, 6 maple, 11 green ash, 1 weeping willow for Elizabeth, and 2 (divided into 4) lilacs for Karl. All are growing and thriving so far.

Our one new apple is from the Prairie Magic tree; the other two are harolson and royal duchess. Our old apple tree has fruit growing. I need to get a plastic jug of "stuff" hung in it to deter the worms. The "stuff" recipe has to be found but it contains things like sugar and apple cider vinegar or something like that. I'll ask my friend, Bev.

Also growing are raspberries! My small patch that started with transplants from friend Amy last fall was a bit overgrown this year but after a little work its coming around. I'm thinking of buying some new plants and filling in the bare spots. The gooseberry bush looks good after being cut back and cleaned out, however haven't seen much fruit yet. Plums are small but ample.

Whey-fed pork

Erbert and Gerbert enjoying the great outdoors. These two had run of the pasture getting good excercise and fresh air making for two happy pigs.
These pigs were fed whey - the by-product of our cheese-making projects. We now are grateful for a freezer full of very healthy, good-tasting pork and plan to get two more feeder pigs to begin the 5-month process again.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Heirloom Turkeys

All they do is make noise! But they sure are cute.
The Turkey Poults arrived last Thursday morning. We had the chicken coop all cleaned out (thanks to Elizabeth), the heat lamp hooked up, water and feed ready to go. The poults come in a small box with a divider; Blue Slate breed on one side and Narragansett on the other. Each poult has to be hand-delivered to the water and feed so they know where to find these on their own. And then we check on them often so see how its going.
Last year we had amazing success with receiving 11 birds and ending up with 11 at the end of the season. This year is more to the norm with already losing 6 out of 22 birds. Things seem to be settling down in the coop now so we hope to keep all the rest.
When we first researched raising turkeys, we read the statement that for the first 6 weeks its hard to keep them alive, after that its hard to kill 'em. At this early stage they are quite fragile. But we'll keep checking on them and are looking forward to the day we can let them go outside, and they can start roaming around. Last year we had so much fun watching the birds and listening to them. What a funny bird! And of course we look forward to late November when they all go to the processor and then to the customer for great turkey dinners!
Happy Thanksgiving.

Friday, May 28, 2010

Milking Time is Stability

Milking Time! It happens twice a day. One could say it ties us down but I think it adds stability and a sense of calmness. The cows moving to the barn in single file, the pulsing of the pump, the smell of straw and warm milk, and kittens tussling about all add an ambiance of peace to milk time. A time to slow down and enjoy goodness.
Later after the milk has been filtered and cooled, its poured into glasses or over cereal or into soups and other recipes. We love knowing its full of nutrition. The picture shows our milk bucket and claw. The funny silver thing on top of the bucket is a can to hold the hose in proper place. Its a good system, cleans well, easy to use. Faster than hand milking.

Friday, May 21, 2010

Icelandic Sheep

Isn't she a beauty! Here's one of our mama sheep with her twins. Icelandic Sheep are originally from. . . Iceland (could you guess?), however ours came from eastern MN. Verna, pictured above, came with 4 other ewes in May, 2009 to join Bubba, the Icelandic Ram. Now we have 8 growing lambs for September sale. They are all quite content in their own pasture with plenty of room to run, fresh air, and a shed to get out of the sun/wind. Theirs is a good life.
Icelandic Sheep have long fiber wool. Since the above pic, the ewes and Bubba have been sheered so they look a bit smaller. With our wonderful warm temps this week, I think they were glad to shed the wool. We have four fleeces and the sheerer took two. I'm still wondering what to do with it. Any ideas? :)
Icelandic meat is said to be more tender and mild-tasting. As this is our first year raising them, I'll have to wait until Fall to find out. But all the testimonies I've read give me reason to look forward to a good product to sell. If you're interested and live near MN/ND border, email us at grass@wtc-mail.net.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Here is a Thistle weed that was sprayed with vinegar/salt mixture yesterday. At 8am today it is brownish and sickly looking. Since it's by a building, I didn't mind using the salt; the soil in the area is not needed for growing.
Today we bought a 1.5 gal pump sprayer so we can cover a larger area faster and easier. The small hand spray bottle was quite inefficient and probably wouldn't hold out for the entire lawn.
It's a hot, sunny day; just right for taking care of the rest of this weed.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Sticks and Weeds

The game "Pick Up Sticks" has taken on new meaning the past few days for Karl and me. We have ample trees here at GrassStain Farm that are great for providing cows and sheep with shade from hot sun or protection from rain or wind. It also supplies us with plenty of sticks to pick up before the mower can come through. Several of the tree rows have not been cleaned out in awhile so large (and I mean Large!) branches and clutter have collected for us to gather at our leisure. Although it's hard work producing sore muscles, I have to say I find it satisfying. You'll have to ask Karl for his personal opinion. He's the guy handling the ones too big for Mom, pushing over standing, dead trunks, and then hauling said trunks away by dragging them chained up to the tractor. He's a good son. :)

Today we are doing a scientific experiment to a loose degree. Karl and I are trying several different Homemade Weed Killer Recipes and Methods (from tipnut.com) to get rid of the ever-increasing thistle. It's the weed that makes running barefoot very painful! Some of the larger patches (i.e. the NE pasture) Bob plans to plow up several times and then plant grass. But the smaller ones are amidst the lawn. The killer ingredients include vinegar, salt, and liquid dish detergent. One amusing method is to boil the weed to death; pour boiling water on it. Very cost effective if nothing else. We'll see which weed it kills.

Speaking of weeds, Elizabeth has spent the last two mornings in her vegetable garden weeding. She is so committed to her garden and does a great job. Soon we plan to dig a trench and lay a water hose in-ground so there is a spigot by the garden thereby making watering easier. This will happen before she leaves for CBC and Mom takes over!

Do you get the idea that Mom is the wimp on the farm! Well, someone has to be. I provide the cheerful attitude and to do list which makes me highly favored. :)

Friday, May 14, 2010

Wally at work

Wally, our pembroke welsh corgi, is a working dog. Though we haven't trained him near to what his potential is, he is quite helpful and always active. When there is nothing to do, Wally looks around for a job. Sometimes it's corraling the cats. Sometimes it's catching flies.

I'm thinking how cool it would be if teenagers were a little like Wally. When they don't have a specific job to do, they would look around to see what needs to be done and just do it. My teens are really great kids, however they haven't acquired that skill yet. In time their eyesight will improve, their priorities will adjust, their standard of living will rise, and then they, too, will be able to create their own "to do" list of work around the farm/house. Until then, I'll continue to dole out the jobs and enjoy watching Wally at work.