2016
09/29

Category:
farming
Garden
Life
quilts

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Little house purchase

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This little house with a detached garage on 4 acres with it’s own well and septic tank,

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 this 36 x 48 horse barn,

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and this hoop house are what have been taking so much of my time lately.   The property adjoins ours.  The owners were not in good enough health to keep things up, therefore there is a lot of work to be done as you can easily see.    After a lot of negotiating and biting our tongues, we signed the papers today and will take possession either on Monday or Tuesday, when the sale is recorded by the county.  We have a potential tenant  (I have had to check out as well as one can), who with his wife is excited about doing the yard work and painting.   They will only rent the house, not the land, barn, or hoop house.  The barn and land are for the sheep.  The plan is to put the garden that is currently on the steep hill, between the barn which is on the lower side of the trees and the hoop house.   It is much flatter and will be so much easier to garden.   So there are more garden boxes going in this winter.   And probably less quilting as well.

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Another hour of sewing and bit by bit, the quilt is progressing.

 

z

2016
09/28

Category:
Life
quilts
Sewing

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September Sew fun Ideas and “me time”

I made a brief visit to the Sew Fun program this morning and found:

   img_5379a img_5381aThis shirt is from the LoriAnne pattern, with a cowl made to cover the neckline.  What a unique way to change a look!

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These quilts made from foundation piecing and Mylar Stars books.   Neither were extremely exciting.

 

 

 

Sew Fun had the usual purses and pressing mats, pillows, and even a purse organizer, but I think more thought should have gone into this program.   I think the program chair may be running out of ideas, or maybe it is just difficult to keep coming up with new things to sell us.

I left early and got some quotes on lumber prices to fix the stalls in the barn and a few groceries and was back home by lunch.

AND THEN, after lunch, I took some “me time”   The weather was so beautiful and it will soon be winter, my soul needed to be nourished by just sitting in the sun enjoying the gorgeous view.  Do you ever do that?  Just be quiet, sit, and enjoy.    I think I will do it more often.   Why am I always in such a rush to get things done that I  don’t take time to enjoy the little things?

The rest of the day was spent cleaning a freezer and doing credit checks on a potential tenant.   Tomorrow we will take the money to the attorney and the following day, the papers should be signed.   And then, the real work begins, getting the house ready to live in again.

 

 

 

s

 

s

2016
09/27

Category:
food
Life

COMMENTS:
1 Comment »

4 patches and green squares

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Do we ever tire of 4 patches?  Remember all those little green squares that I cut at 2.5″ instead of 3″.   They wanted to be useful.   So now they will have a home.

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Here is the applesauce from last night?

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And this is what it looked like this morning.   I started it on fast cook and after an hour, turned it to the slow cook.   It cooked for about 21 hours.  And though it is mild, it is yummy.   Here is the recipe:

  •  Enough applesauce to nearly fill your crockpot

  • 1 cup honey

  • 1 1/2 T cinnamon

  • 1 teas nutmeg

  • 1/2 teas cloves

  • Mix together and put in crockpot

  • Simmer 12-24 hours until cooked in half.   Jar and process for 10 minutes, or just refrigerate and eat within a week.

2016
09/26

Category:
Foods
Life

COMMENTS:
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How to make applesauce in your blender

img_5347a Before making the applesauce, clean your jars and have them ready.   I ran mine through the dishwasher.

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You can use your old jar rings.   Put the new lids in water and let them soak while you prepare the apples

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Wash the apples, but don’t  peel them.

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Cut the apples in quarters, remove the core and cut each piece across the middle.  With about 1/4 cup of water in your hi-power (Vitamix) blender, add one quarter blender jar of raw apples.   Turn speed up and as soon as these are blended, keep adding more until the blender is full.   After the first blender of apples, you won’t need to add more water as there will be enough fluid left from the previous load.   These apples were from the neighbors trees which had not been cared for, so there were lots of spots to cut out.  And yes, this way does lose a bit more apple, but I don’t mind because it is quick, easy, and the chickens or compost can have the discards.

 

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Using a canning funnel, pour just up to the bottom of the first ring.

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Even if the rim looks clean, put your clean finger in water and run it around the rim to make sure the rim is clean,

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Now put on the lid, then the ring.

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When you have 7 jars, (pints or quarts) put them in the water bath canning kettle and bring to a rolling boil.   Turn down and keep boiling.   See there are bubbles in the water, not just on the lids.  Boil 15 minutes for pints and 20 for quarts.   If you are at a higher elevation, check with your extension agent.   OR you can make fewer jars and keep it in the refrigerator for up to a week.

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At the end of this time, remove from the kettle and set on a towel until cool enough to loosen the lid and rinse the outside of the jar.   Then use a sharpie to write on the lid.  I put 10/16, because it is so close to the end of the month.    TERRIFIC!.  You are done without peeling a single apple or losing the nutrition in the skin.  Your applesauce will vary in color with the color of the apple skin.   If you desire, you could add cinnamon and/or sugar.

Below, I saved some of the applesauce and added honey and spices to it to make apple butter.  This I placed in my slow cooker.   It is a new recipe, so I will let you know how we like it.

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2016
09/25

Category:
Life
quilts
Schedules

COMMENTS:
4 Comments »

16 Patch quilt finished

img_5343This 16 patch quilt is finished and ready to toss in the washer and dryer.   I like to do that with each quilt so there are no surprises to the recipient.   This quilt measures 52 x 63″ and I’ve used the darker green on the back which is the same as the binding.

I’m so far behind in my schedule making.   Usually by now, I have October on paper.   But not this year.   Perhaps it was because we did so much more outside.   I would like to complete 2 quilts a month as well as some doll clothes and embroidery.   I guess it’s time to put pen to paper.

2016
09/23

Category:
farming
Life
quilts

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Ram, Ram – Destruction day ends

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Ram, Ram!  Do you know why a male sheep is called a “ram”.   The above photo should give you a good idea.   One would think their heads are made of steel.   If the shepherd is not very careful, the ram could see him/her as competition and injure or even kill the shepherd.   Astro and his girls have been moved to a different pasture without buildings and with lots of hot wire.   They will have to sleep under the cedars either until he is out of rut or until I sell him, depending on my patience.

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More ram?   Yes, the quilting machine must have had communication with the above ram.   It practiced ramming on this fabric.   There must have been a tiny spot where the foot was able to get under the fabric at an intersection.

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I am fortunate.   I took the piece and the quilting out to this point.   These are small pieces and it took me awhile to get the quilting out and will take time to put a new piece in by hand.  Since I don’t want to move it, it is something I will do to save this quilt.   Some people have quilting machines rip their fabric at places not as easily repaired.   This type of thing makes me want to roll my eyes, when someone says “but don’t you quilt by computer?”.    Yes, I do, but I still am right there.   This could have been much more major if I hadn’t been.  A computer driven machine just means there is more work involved because first it has to be programmed and then watched to make sure it behaves.

2016
09/22

Category:
Life

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WA State Fair review

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I enjoy going to the WA state fair and am always reminded of the times we went as a 4H family.  At various time, the children showed their goats, Jersey calves and a horse.  I also had a booth selling hedgehogs about 20 years ago.    We  enjoyed our times there.   We spent today at the fair walking and reminiscing.

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But we did not eat the “good” fair food, though we were tempted.

img_5327aThey parked the sheep in the furthest barn.   So we did a LOT of walking.   It turns out the sheep I’m getting in October are offspring of this shepherdess’ flock.   I was asking about the sheep wool on some of the sheep she had there when I learned that she is breeding for qualities I am seeking.

img_5329aThese little cuties were in the outside children’s area of the petting zoo.  The children have rides that take them through a “farm”.

img_5325a I love what this woman has done with flying geese.  No, I will not be doing one anytime soon, but I did enjoy seeing it.

Of course it wouldn’t have been complete without checking out the old and new merchants.   We did our part, we looked, but just didn’t find a need to spend money.  I must mention a booth there selling sugar gliders that the people were calling sugar bearsThe glider came with a very adequate cage, instructions and a helpful hotline.  At the price being charged they will go to homes that really want them.

d

 

2016
09/19

Category:
Knitting

COMMENTS:
1 Comment »

Red striped socks are finished

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The red socks are finished and I’m very happy with how they knitted up.   These are made with Cascadia Yarns “Heritage paints”, a hand painted yarn.   The yarn is a superwash with 75% merino and 25% nylon, which means “throw in washer and dryer”.   They were knit on US size #2 needles.  I cast on 64 stitches and knit very plain stockinette with a one inch 2 x 2 ribbing.

2016
09/18

Category:
farming
Garden
Life
quilts

COMMENTS:
2 Comments »

Achieved goals for the day, and a quilt sew along

 

918-hoophouse

Goal #1:  The hoop house is nearly weeded (one more aisle to go)  and lettuce has been planted for the next round.   Most of the spent plants are out.   It looks almost bare.   But the big sweet potato plants are trying to make up for all that

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Goal #2. Then we tackled the job of moving sheep into different groups so the girls would get bred with the guys we chose.   Fortunately the ram Shetland sheep have horns which help us to be able to grab them.     So my helper made a door in the fence and a divider between the two sides of the night area, and we separated Zillow and put him in with Juliette (a Quessant sheep) and her daughters.   The new Shetland sheep coming will go in with them.   Then new ram, Stormy,  will go into the area where Zillow was.   Oh happy day, no one will be breeding his relatives.   There are still the three Cormos which DH would like me to sell.   I will put that on my must do list.   Such a toss up caused by breeding time!

Then moving on, I found a sew along project to share with you.     It is a bear patch quilt in 4 different sizes from SEW FRESH QUILTS.   I’ll be making mine in the crib size which is 47 x 47″.   The page (click the red word) is for the introduction and fabric selection.  The bear paws are half square triangles which means they will be easy.   Yes, I will be making it – just a matter of when I can get started.

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Goal #3:  The next quilt is now mounted and waiting for me to quilt.

Your turn:   I have a question for you.    I started the blog to encourage myself to get more done.   I find now that I’d really like to be more help and encouragement to you?   Would you like to be able to make a list of what you plan to accomplish this week/month?   Would you like more information on how I do something – anything related to homesteading would be in this list?  Or do we need an exercise encouragement or weight or what?   I really need your imput into this to be able to have a better blog and not waste your time.    Maybe I can find out how to make a poll.   Does anyone of you readers know how to do that?   Have a good day and we’ll meet again soon.

 

 

 

2016
09/16

Category:
quilts

COMMENTS:
3 Comments »

9 Patch Quilt

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This 9 patch quilt finished at 50 x 50″.   These patches started as 2.5″ square and ended with a  finished 9 patch 6″ square.    I used a different machine to finish.  The machine I was using is having issues with the feed dogs and timing system which means the machine needs to back to be repaired. This will be the 4th time this summer.   Maybe, just maybe, they can get it right.