Monday, May 24, 2010

Week Four

Sunday it was a month ago that we drove up here. We have done a lot since then and it seems longer than that but the days seem to go by faster and faster. We have learned a lot since then also. One, that we still love the country farm life and even if its a small hobby farm, we want to do it. Two, it has given Ben the self confidence that he can do it. He has learned much and really enjoys using animal power. You can read all the books you want, but doing it hands on helps you really learn. We know God lead us up here and in the process He has taught us so much, many things I would have never dreamed he would have, but he knew. We have also learned to grow closer Him. We are still seeking God's guidance and taking one day at a time.
I was able to hit up a few garage sales this week. Didn't find too much but it was fun to shop around. I did find a few more old books to add to my collection, a couple over a hundred years old. We also had some free time on Saturday so we did a little shopping and went out to eat and drove a little ways into the Adirondack Park. It was very pretty. We forgot the camera however but hope to go back.

Ben harrowing the upper field. This was woods like the trees behind him 3-4 years ago. It is pretty rocky in places but it still works. We all had the horses pulling the stone boat last week and took out a bunch of stones.
Ben and his faithful side-kick... well...until she saw me...They were so so cute!
looking at the farm from the upper field
They cut some hay today, thick clover
I made the mistake and forgot I turned the horses water on. Well a couple hours later Ben and I come out to the barn and here water running. I should have taken a pic. It wasn't real funny then, I felt so bad but it's funny now. The water was over your ankles in parts of the horse barn. At least the horses stalls are built up so they were not standing in water. We worked on it today and unplugged a drain and let it drain into the yard. It was a yucky mess but it getting dry now.
Today I worked with Ben all morning, doing spring cleaning, spring barn cleaning. We moved weaned calves, cleaned stalls, moved heifers out to pasture to see them in the yard about a half hour later and have to round them up and put them up all over again! LOL
We are looking forward to this Saturday. They are having a horse pull here. That should be fun to see.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Week Three

The beautiful lilac bush
Looking at the house from the behind

Well I started this post on Friday but am finally finishing it today, Monday. I have been sick for part of the weekend but am feeling a lot better today but still pretty weak and easily winded!

Ben has been able to work and drive the horses more and more this past week. He did a lot of harrowing on a couple fields down the road. He really enjoys that.

This is one of my favorite pictures
All the cows were let out to pasture last weekend. All the dry cows were let out to stay along with the Percheron colts. The milkers go out in the morning after milking and come in, in the evening. Soon they will be out at night as well, just coming in for milkings, and extra feed.
We have had a couple evenings we have just gone for a drive. The countryside is so beautiful.

I realized that I have no pics of me, so took one. I will have to get Ben to get a few of me.

This is the oats coming up that Ben helped plant the first day we were here

This is what happens when the cows get out, fresh fertilizer delivered straight to your lawn!
Good friends!

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Happy Mom's Day

I want to send out a wish to my mom for a happy Mother's day! Thanks for all you have done for me and our family! You are great!
Happy Mother's day also to my great mother-in-law, or mother-in-love as she likes to say. Hope your day is great!
We love you both!!!! Wish we could be with you both in person today but this will have to do until we can! XOXO

Friday, May 7, 2010

Week Two!!

Here we are, another week has come and gone. In thinking that it was only two weeks ago we were traveling up here, it seems like a long time ago. Then on the other hand the days seem to have gone by fast.
Our day starts at about 6 am, in the barn doing morning chores. Ben helps everyday and I do it every other morning, switching off with Brenda, with both Ben and I having Sunday morning off. Ben does most of the chores with the horses. I feed the heifers,(feed them first to shut them up!) calves, pigs and chickens. I also feed the milkers their grain and the dry cows, hay, if Ben doesn't do it first. Chores also include scraping down the stalls :) and throwing down some sawdust under them as well as throwing down some fresh hay under the calves. After milking is over I take apart the milking machines and wash them.My namesake cow, Bethany. Notice she has brown spots, not black
Evening chores include everything above with a few variations. All the cows get silage in the evening. Ben usually shovels it out of the silo and then to the cows. The milk truck comes every other day, so I usually wash the tank out after he comes.
This week we did not have any snow but it has been quite rainy on and off, which has hindered some work in fields being they are too wet.
I started some seeds this week in preparation for my garden. I also went to a greenhouse and drooled over all the plants and possibilities. Greenhouses just make you relax and come away refreshed, good therapy for the soul!Spring has sprung and come out if full force! Above is the apple tree in their back yard.
The lilacs are coming out if full force and smell wonderful.
I know some consider them a weed but dandelions are very pretty and the yard and pasture is just full of them, well was full before the grass was cut!

As you can see the leaves are pretty much out now as well. Here is a view of their house in full spring green!
Ben has been able to work more and more with the horses as well as becoming more used to them. He was able to drive them a little furrowing the garden plot. He was so excited!
Do pray for Ben's hands. We have been a little worried about them. He has been having pain, tingling and burning as well as being puffy on and off the last couple weeks. Not sure what it is.
Besides that life is going pretty good and keeping busy. There is Amish around and we have had some contact with them. Ben has gone to the harness shop a couple times to get some things repaired. Eli the blacksmith came Thursday to trim the colts hooves before they let them out to pasture for the summer. We watched and talked some with him. Unfortunatly I do not have any pictures to share with you being they do not get their picture taken. I have never seen an Amish without his hat on and realized they have really long hair! LOL
Hope you enjoy my ramblings and pictures! Hopefully it will give you a little taste of our lives at the moment.
One of the storms that blew up this week! This is looking across the fields in front of their house.
Ben was able to use his cowboy coat Jonathan! He said it works well!
Here is a jug a milk, can you see the cream separated on top? Yummy, ready to be skimmed off and great for coffee or whatever you choose.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Simple Granola

Thought I would pass along this great granola recipe. When you smell like cows half the day it is good to come in and smell something good cooking! This is a recipe Brenda uses all the time from a family cookbook, Stoltzfus Family Cookery.

Simple Granola
2c whole wheat flour
6 C rolled oats
1 C coconut
1C wheat germ
1/2 C water
1C. oil
1 C honey or corn syrup, or Maple syrup
2 tsp vanilla
1 T salt

Combine first 4 dry ingredients. Blend remaining 5 ingredients separately, then mix with dry ingredients. Spread on 2-3 greased cookie sheets. Bake at 250 degrees for 1 hour, or until dry and golden. (I stirred and turned pans half way through) Store in covered containers. Tastes great in yogurt, or milk or just plain!
*Optional-add various nuts before baking (I added sunflower seeds and walnuts)
* also when eating stir in some raisins or craisins .
To all my fellow campers and reenactors... in the side note of the recipe, it says they made this in Hatti in cast iron kettles over charcoal fire until it was dry.