Sunday, February 24, 2013

It may seem like it, but my hands haven't been idle...

I'm a tad slow on the blogging.  One reason is my camera batteries died last week.  Although I love blogging and taking pictures, I'm not making a special trip anywhere for batteries.  It just had to wait.  Also I have been a bit preoccupied with my quilt project.  I am in the middle of  quilting, but thought I'd show my progress.  I am using the quilting foot on my sewing machine for the first time.  It has been a learning experience.  Luckily I've had some good advice from the ladies at the quilt shop. 

I promise I haven't been idle.  I hope everyone else has been able to stay busy and keep their minds off of this last few months of winter.  My goal is to be done before April 1st.
circa 2011 The ORIGINAL Farmgirl Friday Blog HopRurality Blog Hop #5

Saturday, February 16, 2013

Winter wandering...

Today was a beautiful day for a walk so,  snowshoes in hand, out the door Ella and I went.  We haven't had the most wonderful walking weather on the weekends and Ella was ready for a winter wander.

The only problem was we have had a lot of snow.  I don't think this was quite what Ella had hoped for.  She huffed.

Poor Ella also puffed.
In the end, she decided a wander in the woods wasn't wise.  It was more like work.

Of course, the return trip was much easier and Ella couldn't wait to get back so she could melt off the snow by the fire and take a nap.  She couldn't understand why I was taking forever.

We did enjoy our winter wandering despite the work.

Sunday, February 10, 2013

My Mom's idle hands...

This title is a bit of a misnomer. Farm/Ranch women never really have idle hands. One of my strongest memories of Mom is her sitting in the living room on the night shift of calf watch. She would crochet baby blankets and then check the heifers every hour.  She could turn out the most beautiful blanket in only a few days. 
 She is known for her baby blankets.  They are made of soft flannel and she crochets the most intricate edges.  I regret not paying better attention when she tried to teach me. 
 I did pay attention when she taught me how to make quilts.  This is one of her quilts.  It is made from used jeans (something that is plentiful on a ranch) and the brands are all family brands. 
Those are some examples of what Mom did with her 'idle' hands.  Mom was able to create something useful and beautiful with her 'down' time.  I admire her talent and many a baby was kept warm and safe wrapped in her creations.

We haven't found Nemo here, but we are getting some pretty strong winds and snow.  I hope everyone is warm and safe.

Sunday, February 3, 2013

How one thing leads to another and another...

I didn't have any big plans today.  After scouring the town of Sturgis yesterday, my husband and I finally found a fabric shop I had heard about.  I now have the back and batting for my quilt, but I didn't want to work on it today.  We had omelets this morning for breakfast and that led to many different projects.  Before I explain how one thing led to another I have to show you my farm fresh eggs...

Can you say WOW?  I get my eggs from a co-worker and I can't get over the egg production they have been getting this winter.  They have 60 some hens, provide extra lighting, and kick them outside during the day.  To say that is a large egg is a bit understated.  Cool huh?

Anyway, after making bacon omelets, I had a lot of bacon fat and egg shells leftover.  I decided to get some small projects out of the way.  I used the bacon fat to make suet for the birds.  Pretty simple: bacon fat, sunflower seeds, cornmeal, and peanut butter.
The next project wasn't so pretty.  I took the egg shells and raided the leftovers.  I blended egg shells, coffee grounds, bananas, bread heals, a bad pear, and other green things past their time.  I then took an old milk pail added some used potting soil, shredded paper, and my leftover smoothie.  A smoothie appetizing for worms only.
After mixing the soil, paper, and smoothie all together, I then added a new stack to my worm bin.  The worms are supposed to move up to the next stack leaving the stack below with rich castings.  The little winter worms are really working their way through my leftovers.  They have already accumulated a good amount of compost.  I feed them about once a month.  This is the second time I've added a stack.
The thought of all that compost for my veggie beds started me on planning my vegetable garden beds for next year. I am going to use the square foot gardening method, as that is what. I have been using in the greenhouse with great success.  I sat down with my computer, the Territorial Seed Company Catalogue, and the Square Foot Gardening Book.  I have my order form filled out and my plan diagramed on the computer.  Ready for the first sign of spring.  That is how omlets became bird and worm food, which in turn became a morning of garden planning.  Hope your day turned out as productive.