Friday, July 31, 2009

Blueberry Ice Cream, Guinea's, Canning Beans

I just want to frame this photo by Cathy at Noble Pig and put it in my kitchen. Because I've been experimenting making homemade ice cream, I was also interested in the recipe.

My homemade ice cream uses our "homemade" goats milk. I've been trying to start out simple but the consistancy is somewhat icy and now I want to move towards a creamier base. Stay tuned.

32 guinea's and 9 Cuckoo marans are in their larger condo now. The guinea's are 2 weeks and 2 days old today. We're gonna try to keep them contained for 6 weeks.

I watched MIL can some beans.

A nephew, Demetre, looks on.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Guinea Coop, GoatCheese, etc

The guinea keets will be moving from the brooder soon and Mike is making them some new digs over on the buck side of the barn.

I always fold onions into hamburger patties and now spread on some of my homemade goat cheese. Mike is the hamburger connaisseur, I don't have a palette for meat, he loved it.

forgot to take a photo of the cooked hamburger
now cucumbers are more down my alley, can't wait until these are ready

We rode the riding lawn mower (our ATV), around the 30 acres, the birdseye view of our home.

Back down at the buck pen, they can see inlaws house.

Funny, Mike and I sat in the red chairs, we walked away and I turned back and Boones and Cahoot were already in the chairs.

Our Farmers Market got a new sign

Demand the Freedom to Choose Your Own Food

this guy, an student at ASU, always buys our eggs. The students run the farm and sell various vegetables.

these girls make and sell jewelry

Friday, July 24, 2009

Friday Night Fish, Franklin, Flowers & Windmill

This evening the poultry got some Friday night fish and Mike and I went to a country restaurant at the Tennessee line (just a few miles up the road) and had some Friday night fish. If you can't tell, Franklin is smiling here, he's full of those fish above.

We walked up to check on the garden and had a following.

Some of the bloggers that live down south have said that their gardens have dried up from all the heat and no rain. Fortunately, up here in the Appalachians, we have had a cool summer [never really gets hot here] and enough rain and our garden is lush.

Tonight, that crazy SweetPea somehow got the neck strap to my camera that was laying on a patio table, around her neck and freaked out. My camera is banging against the gravel and dirt, and she is just bucking and stomping up and down, Mike is trying to catch her, and she is acting like a crazy goat. Finally, Mike wrestled the camera off of her and we were sure it was done for but seems to be working fine and my unprotected lens wasn't scratched. Panasonic DMC-FZ8

Drama just follows that girl around. She got knocked up way too young and worried me to death, then had to have a c-section {cost us $700 on MEMORIAL DAY HOLIDAY}, never did recognize her own daughter, we've had to bottle feed Gabbi since she was born, and the list just goes on.

but back to the garden, the pickins have been good. corn and beans are just starting to come in.

The guinea keets are 9 days old. Don't know if you can see 'em but 9 Cuckoo Marans have been added in. The other evening we heard a ruckus, ran out, and our terriers had discovered a hen with some newly hatched chicks. They were attacking the hen, but she is fine now although missing quite a few feathers. We hadn't realized she was missing and had hatched these chicks somewhere in the barn. Our 3 terriers run at night and stay in a dog kennel during the day. Our goats and chickens are locked up at night.

Early, the Daddy of the chicks

Look at the size of this Echinacea.

Wish I could say that these flower photo's were taken in my own yard but it'll take me a while to work up to this much flower action and we just moved to this 30 acres Memorial weekend. However, there is some action going on here. Our Greek brother-inlaw is a contractor and one of his sons, our nephew, Savva, has been working on the footers to what will be a covered deck.

Although Boone is a small town we do have a university here, Appalachian State University. Recently, ASU got a windmill, I went up to snap a few photo's of it and flowers were all around.

From 1979 to 1983, Boone, NC was home to the largest wind-powered electric generator in the nation. Managed by NASA and operated by Blue Ridge Electric Membership Corporation, the windmill—the “MOD-1” as it was called—was located on top of Howard’s Knob, and put Boone on the map for sustainable energy, even though its primitive design discouraged much energy production. This year, Boone has become a windmill city once again. The tower height is 115 feet, the blade diameter is 66 feet and the turbine will produces 150,000 kilowatt hours of electricity annually—or roughly enough energy to power 10 to 15 residential homes. The machine generates clean, renewable energy and does feed the energy produced directly into the electrical grid. The wind turbine is the largest in North Carolina and serves as a demonstration project for all community members in the High Country and sits at the Broyhill Inn on the ASU campus.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

guinea's and guests

Since I have 32 Pearl Guinea's in the brooder, I've been doing some research.

Guineas originated in Africa and are excellent foragers. They grow and thrive on grasshoppers, ticks, snakes, insects and weed seeds. Guineas are also great watchdogs as they call out at the approach of any strangers.

Great for insect & rodent control
Easy to raise
Ornamental Feathers
Delicious eggs (they make some of the best cakes!)
Meat is a delicacy (similar in taste to pheasant)
Excellent foragers – they need almost no supplemental feed during the summer time.
Extremely hardy - despite the fact that they are native to Africa, guinea fowl are able to take northern temperatures almost like penquins!
They are the “watch dogs of the barnyard” (alerting other livestock to danger)
Guineas don't act like chickens. They are much more active than chickens and not as easily tamed. They seem to retain some of their wild behavior and will remind you of this whenever they get spooked.

I didn't take these photo's, dug 'em up from the internet, I've never had guinea's before.

I did take the photo's below. CoCo and Gabbi playing.


We had two animal-loving boys, Drew and Liam, come visit us.

They are nephews of a gal, Kathy, that buys eggs from us. I think the boys enjoyed themselves. This is Kathy's webpage, look at her beautiful artwork, says she may paint our goats sometime.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

my cavier, goat-cheese rigatoni, and sweet boys

my cavier - blackberries


We stuffed rigatoni with our homemade goat cheese seasoned with garlic, onion, chives, salt and pepper.

To make the goat cheese, the raw milk is warmed to 80 degrees to provide an environment hospitable for bacteria. I add in some buttermilk and a drop of rennet. I found out that the rennet needs to come from a cheesemaking company such as New England Cheesemaking Supply, the rennet is better quality and keep it refrigerated.

Topped the rigatoni with a tomato sauce. Was awesome! We lapped it up.

At night, we lock up our poultry and goats. This is the poultry pen.

There's Franklin back there.

another shot of Boones

this is a MaggiDans milker

It always breaks my heart when people ask about mean roosters, turkey toms, and bucks. We live in harmony with all our animals. Yes, I've had a couple of roosters that were a little too over protective about their girls, sorta charging behind me, but it never amounted to anything. This is Duffy, a young Wheaten Marans roo. His Daddy, July, was a delight but we found him dead one morning and hopefully Duffy will be like him.

This is Early, a Cuckoo Marans roo, he has never been anything but real sweet and easy. He knows he doesn't have to feel threatened in any way. Like I said, the birds are locked up at night, we have three large security lights on at the barn, Mike checks on everybody before he goes to bed, and our terriers run all night to keep any predators at bay. The dogs are locked in a kennel run during the day and our farm animals free range in fenced areas. So far, so good over here on the 30 acres.

Franklin, our Bourbon Red tom, is such a joy to be around that I get emotional thinking about him. I just love him so dearly. He follows us around and just eats up attention. He doesn't have an aggressive mean bone in his body. He is molting now so doesn't look as stunning as he usually does.

Cahoot and SugarPop. All of 15 our goats are Nigerian Dwarf Dairy.


MilkDud, We pet and hug on all our bucks.

Peggy, a Cuckoo Marans hen

SweetPea and the gang

Our old barn is far from pretty but it certainly serves a wonderful purpose for our animals. Mike built wood floors off the ground and the stalls ar extra large, especially useful when the weather is poor. Does - June, Caliente, SweetPea, and Clara. Their daughters are in the stall next door now so we have full udders to milk in the morning.

front of the barn at night

rear of barn at night