Friday, August 31, 2012

Trip to Big Spring

My husband and I had to go see the dentist in Van Buren, Missouri for our checkups. After we were finished we drove to nearby Big Springs, Missouri to the state park there. Here is the view from on top a hill, you can see the spring river.

Clear cold spring water from underground.

No swimming in and no walking on the spring water.

Gum trees over the spring

Explanation to why Missouri has such unique water. Our own wells come from a karst on our property. This is why we moved here to Missouri, for clean land and water.

Clean and clear river from the Big Spring into the Current River.
No trash nor pollution in these waterways.
You cannot take a boat nor swim on the spring water, but you can 
once it connects to the Current River.

All this cold water rushing up from the ground.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Staghorn Sumac

I can always tell fall is on the way when I see these red berries on the Staghorn Sumac. I just discovered I can turn these berries into a tea to drink. I am going to try this as the are high in Vitamin C similar to lemons. These are not the Sumac that is poisonous, those have white berries.

Monday, August 27, 2012

Clouds and Rain

Finally, some rain in the Ozarks. 

Big fat clouds with water in them. Haven't seen these in a long time.

We finally got a good amount of rain. And if the hurricane comes by the end of the week we could get more. We can use all the rain we can get up here.

Zilla Play

Osa and Zilla hunting for wild rabbits in the hay stacks. They are too slow to catch any, just like to flush them out.

Zilla looses Osa in the forest.

Zilla and Poppy discuss the rules of playing.

Zilla agrees with the rules.

Was that a rabbit?

Ok, lets both go and hunt rabbits together.

My first Challah Bread

Second rise then I roll out then braid and let rise until double in size.

After sitting in a warm kitchen they are doubled and ready to bake.

Success, all baked and ready to serve. I used half whole wheat and half all purpose flour.

Friday, August 24, 2012

Turkey Dancing

My two young toms showing me their moves.

My bourbon tom in full puff.

My grey tom wins the show this morning. He is following me up the steps to the coop.

Two toms escorting me to the food bowls in case I get lost. Every morning I get a turkey dance and escort to the feeding areas. They talk to me and watch me as I feed the horses and then the flock.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Lurkey Turkey

Here is my apricot tom wooing his best gal. She is just avoiding him.

She is just leading him on but he waits by her side anyway.

Porch Deer

I was on my back deck watching the ducks. My two dogs were next to me snoozing in the afternoon sun while the ducks quacked on. I got up to check the oven in the house when I noticed a large doe coming up the steps of my deck. The doe hesitated when she saw me then walked back slowly to my veggie garden under the peach tree. My dogs were oblivious and did nothing as they think deer are small horses and should be on the porch as they were.
I went back into the house and got my camera. The doe just watched me and ate the fallen peaches.

Eating her fill of peaches she then walked up the hill for some green grass.

Giving me a warning stomp but in no hurry to leave.I guess she wanted to check in on me.


I have been tracking Isaac and Joyce, both hurricanes in the Atlantic. When you grow up in New Orleans you always watch out for hurricanes. Now that I live in Missouri and I still watch hurricanes. I have family that still lives in Louisiana. But I am watching for the rain. We really need that rain here in Missouri. While I understand the destruction hurricanes cause, they are a way of life growing up on the coast. You learn to hunker down and wait it out and live without for a while. You learn how to cut down trees, dry out your cars and move debris. You learn how to help your neighbors and share what you have. You learn to deal with snakes, ants and rats in your house swept in by the high water. You learn how to roll up wet carpets.Then one day life almost becomes normal again and the power comes back on. It is not fun and people do die in the flooding; but it is a way of life. You accept it and understand it as the price you pay to live by the water. Hurricanes are forces of nature and while destructive, it also brings relief to areas that need the gift of water.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Maple under Saddle

Here is our two year old Fox Trotter filly, Maple learning to become a good trail horse. This means standing and being quiet before and after a ride. Our trainer is using a bosal for now to teach her commands. She has her first set of shoes, saddle and now a bridle. If she is half as good as her mom was, we will have a keeper.

Slowing Down to Warp Speed

I got a break on the farm this week. I have time to sew for me. Or sew for stuff involving me for a change. I am sewing costumes for our annual Haunted Mill. The theme is Wild West Ghost Town. I have people wanting to be ghosts, scarecrows, zombies and even Indians from the 1900's. The good news is that the costumes can be made to look old and torn. The costumes also have to hold up to 4 days of active teenagers running in them. I am cutting and measuring and using up all the donated fabrics I have around the sewing room. It is a lot of fun. Soon I will be painting the sets we plan to install in the mill to keep people moving safely inside the old mill. Might stick to black and white for that. I can only do as much as I can in the time allowed. At least I have a large amount of volunteers involved in this project.

Value of Things

I was talking to my Dad about how the drought has affected my farm and the price of things. Hay used to be $30-$40 per round bale of hay. But now you can pay $200 + for a single bale. My dad collects cards and says one day his some of cards might be valuable. He said, "You can sell a single card and make $$ amount of dollars, that $$ means a lot of roosters tied around Osa's neck" (see Cone of Rooster post). I laughed at that since it would mean a lot more chickens around the farm. But I am happy with the amount of chickens I have now,minus the one Osa is wearing. I have enough feed for them for the time being. Even though we have had no rain in many months, the livestock is doing well.
I make sure they have food and clean water and a clean place to roost. The rest is up to them. And the value of things means the value of what I give and get in return. I can eat the chickens and their eggs. And they in return have a happy life on the farm more or less. I have to take care of the farm and the animals and they do the same for me in return. There in lies the value of things, to me.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Bible and Sins

I have been having a bible class at my home for a couple of months now. It started with a visit from the Jehovah's witness. They just wanted to sit and read and talk about the bible. I have enjoyed reading the Bible and talking about topics related to today. As I am a Catholic I have no plans to switch faiths, but have enjoyed studying the Bible with other women. I never made the time to do this in my youth. Now I make the time and look forward to it. One of the topics was pleasing God and breaking the rules IE: Sins. Wrath, Sloth, Greed, Lust, Envy, Gluttony, Pride - along with the big 10.
Sloth and Wrath were ones I thought of as different meanings. Sloth could also be Apathy, and Wrath can also be anger that continues long after the person dies. I found this interesting and looked it up in the bible. I am always amazed that the Bible is timeless.
for Apathy: And for Wrath: Just goes to show you there is a lot of good info in the Bible and what it has to tell us about God.
I wish growing up with my own faith was spent more time on the Bible and less time memorizing prayers. As an adult I meet many people of many faiths who have memorized the Bible, but do not live what they read. I see churches who have strayed so far from what was written.
But I am not without a few stones tossed at me and am far from perfect. But I have enjoyed the journey of learning and seeking knowledge from the Bible.

Monday, August 20, 2012

Cone of Rooster

What to do when you come home and your dog is covered in blood and your rooster is dead. You have had previous times when this has happened. You have warned and spanked your dog. Now it is personal. Now my dog gets to wear her dead rooster of shame. I wired the rooster in three places onto my dogs collar. She will wear the dead rooster until it falls off her neck. Every time she tries to bury it, it pops back into her face. This is the last straw. This advice came from a sport dog breeder. It is working already. The chickens are all whispering and shaking their heads at Osa. She will learn this hard lesson.

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Maybe Stallion

Here is our trainers Fox Trotter Perlino Stallion. He is a sweet tempered stud and he 
produces buckskin foals.

Showing how he "parks out" for easy mounting.

Riding with just string. I noticed the stallions large hooves, good for trail riding.

Unique eye colors. I am not a fan of the blue eyes, but the foals have dark eyes.

The trainer just hopped up and put the stallion though his gaits. We might breed our Maple, a Fox Trotter to this stallion when she turns three. We are waiting to see if she is a good horse under saddle and worth breeding. Maple's mom was a great safe horse for anyone to ride. This stallion has the qualities I like in the Fox Trotter breed and his foals are very nice and athletic.

Maple Gets Shoes

Here is Maple and her new companion a mini gelding. Maple is at the trainers for breaking into saddle and trails. She got her first set of shoes and was not happy to be penned up. 

Maple and the mini establishing who rules the pen.

Maple loves to be bossy.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Tractor Time

My husband using a neighbors tractor to unload delivered round bales to our farm. He got a tractor lesson and was set lose upon the bales. Got all 20+ bales offloaded in 30 minutes.
The bales are the size of the tractor cab.
Our  tractor is too small to off load from a double stacked flatbed trailer. The giant John Deere can do the job easily. It is good to have neighbors who share their toys.
Getting ready to load a bale into our truck for delivery to the horse trainers place. Since hay is in short supply, our trainer asked for 2 bales along with training fee to saddle break our young horses.
Close up of the cab.
Returning the tractor just down the road a ways from our farm.
Securing the bale to the truck for delivery.