Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Life Out Here

It has been a whirl wind the last couple of weeks here. Initially I was a bit under the weather, not willing to push myself to my normal limits as far as house chores, cooking and blogging.
I suppose that is normal and the winter weather and dark days contribute to this melancholy.

                      ******Fender takes a break from hunting to be held.******

Then the past week showed itself with a nasty strep bug. Not everyone got the actual strep but everyone at least had the sniffles and a stuffy head. We spent the weekend relaxing, watching movies, eating soup and falling to sleep earlier than usual.

I woke up Monday with the sudden realization that Thanksgiving is knocking on the door and my house and farm show the signs of neglect due to a low energy farm manager. I am not ready for the holiday festivities at all! I have put my emergency "get it all in nice order" plan into action.

It all starts with a hot cup of coffee and the ability to prioritize the necessities of a well managed house and farm.

      ****Tiger Creek is a messy eater. I am glad we are not shearing soon!****

The very first order of the day was to make sure the animals had clean, dry hay. It rained all night and the temps will be dropping this evening. Winter is here. The winter in my part of Georgia means cold rain, and lots of it!

Lucy will be due to calve in about a week and a half. Her udder is starting to fill out and harden.  She is showing a few other signs that birth will soon be upon us. Devin is finishing maintenance on the milking machine pump, and I have been gathering all the other supplies we might need.
I dread milking in cold, wet weather but we are all ready for some fresh milk and cream.

                                    ****Shameless selfie with Lucy!****

We have spent the week studying the pilgrims and the reason for Thanksgiving. It has been a nice change to the normal school routine. The girls have also been bringing their pets down to play and snack while we read.

I realize that many people cringe at the thought of a pet rat, but really they are some of the best pets. This one seems to enjoy the week's spelling assignment with her cracker treat!

We are finally getting back into a normal and regular routine again, and I am working on a couple of projects that I will share once they are finalized.

                         ***Stella likes Indiana best. Nobody else can hug on her!***

I guess it is only normal for things to slow a bit during the cold months. The days are short and so naturally the list of the day's accomplishments should shorten as well.
Cold rainy days like today beg for a warm fire, a wholesome meal, and a good movie. The slow down gives us a season of rest after a very busy warm season of activity.

Yes, Thanksgiving is knocking on the door and we will answer and welcome it, even if we *think* we are not quite ready.

Life out here means we are always ready for family, food and a chance to rejuvenate.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

That Crockpot Soup

One time, many years ago, I was sick. Very sick. I had only 4 kids, but they were little and Devin was not able to get off work to stay home.
My dear best friend Lisa brought me some soup. It was yummy. It was soothing. It was nutritious.

It has been my favorite crockpot soup since. I only make it in the fall and winter, and in fact I made it last year on Christmas Eve. It simmered and cooked all day while we baked cookies and wrapped gifts.

Today we have been busy with school, new chicks, a calf that is a bit under the weather and some farm projects. Guess what has been simmering and cooking in the crockpot? Yep, that crockpot soup.

I will whip up some quick dinner rolls to accompany, and Willow baked her first apple crisp for dessert. It's a fall dinner that anyone would be envious of PLUS it's darn easy on the budget.
What more could one ask for?

What are your favorite crock pot recipes?
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