Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Mr. Butter Knife

Jonny's butter knife won first place in the "Twelve and under Wood Crafts" division at the Meeker County Fair!

Hi, my name is Jonny and I make butter knives to make money, so if you want one we're 4.5 miles north of Dassel. They are made out of red ceder. This is how I make them, first I get a cedar limb and then I have my dad cut it into small lats. Then I trace out my butter knives on the lats. Then I get my jigsaw and cut them out. After they are cut out, I get a belt sander and sand them into their shape. Then I sand them by hand until they are smooth. The last thing I do is oil them with coconut oil. After that I sell them to you! :)

Thursday, August 19, 2010

KITTENS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! by, Emily

(Lady and her kittens)

(Kitten nursing)

Here on the farm one of my jobs is to milk the goats..... 7:00 in the morning and 7:00 at night. Last Tuesday, on the 10th, when I finished up milking, I paused to pet Lady before I left. She was getting BIG and pregnant. I like to feel her stomach, 'cause sometimes I can feel the kittens in there! Well tonight I noticed that her milk bags seemed really full...... hmmm! So when I left, I half-jokingly said, "See you in the morning, Lady, and I expect to find at least 5 kittens with you... good luck!" I didn't really expect anything. :)

Now every morning since Lady has been pregnant, I always hold my breath when I open the door, just hoping she isn't there..... which would mean she's off having her kittens somewhere. And every morning I open the door, and there she is, sitting there waiting for me, with what looks like a big grin on her face. :) So this morning I again was hoping she wasn't there. Slowly I opened the door.... just waiting for her daily "meow!" as if she'd been waiting for me all night! :) (Or maybe it's the milk she's waiting for..... not me.) :) She wasn't there. I stepped out of the milk room into the barn and looked around. No Lady. So I walked excitedly towards the pen where her cat house is, but first glanced into the goat pens.......... there, in the corner, through the fence I saw a little, tiny gray head......!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I rushed into the pen ....... there was Lady all cuddled up, with five, yes, FIVE, ADORABLE, KITTENS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Yaaaaaaaaaaaay!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I was SOOOOOOOO thrilled!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! After admiring them for a couple minutes, I raced neck-break speed to the house and screamed to everyone that Lady had her kittens!!! Well, me and Jonny then went back out to the barn and while we were sitting there petting the little fur-balls, suddenly I glanced over, and here Lady had ANOTHER KITTEN while we were sitting there.... right in front of our eyes.... and we didn't even see it! I've always thought it was interesting how when goats and sheep kid/lamb they always act like they're dying - pushing and groaning and maaing at the top of their lungs, while you can't even tell that cats are in labor.... no noise.... you can't even tell they're pushing! I couldn't believe it! We watched breathlessly! It wasn't moving and certainly didn't look very....... alive..... :/ Lady reached back and started licking it. I was scared, excited, and worried all at once.... then it moved......!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! "IT'S ALIVE!" I was ...... well, beyond happy!!! They are now a week and a day old and doing absolutely WONDERFUL! They are the healthiest, fattest, happiest little kittens I ever saw! And speaking of healthy, as a side note, these kittens are 100% organic. :) I never feed Lady any cat food. She gets goat milk, eggs, oatmeal, raw meat, as well as gophers, mice, and sparrows. And she is very healthy! Lady has never gotten sick or had any diseases! So anyways, there is two dark orange boys, one all-gray boy, one all-gray girl, one gray and brown striped girl, and one light orange girl!!!! :) SO CUTE!!!
If anyone wants to reserve one, better do it quick, 'cause they go really fast!!! My last batch of kittens.... actually all my batches of kittens, sell really fast! In fact, my friend Shiphrah already reserved the gray and brown striped girl .... and her brother might get one too. :)
Cute, cute, cute!!! :)

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Offering Another Cooking Class

Our cooking with herbs class was really fun. Unfortunately the weather prevented us from talking about all the herbs we were planning to talk about in the herb garden, but we did get a few in before it started to rain hard. Our AC unit struggled to keep up with the twenty-one bodies (plus my husband, the camera guy, my sister, Em, and myself) and my hot oven, but we managed. The weather was very sketchy outside, with tornado watches/warnings in the area, but we were happily cooking away without a thought about the storms. :) We did have one person who cancelled, leaving a message on my phone saying they were in their basement seeking cover and would not be attending the class. :)
When we started planning our class, we decided we would put a second date on the calendar for the class just in case we had more people that wanted to sign up than we had room for in my kitchen. Well, that has been the case! So we are now planning to offer the class again.
This class in scheduled for Tuesday, August 17th from 6:30-9pm. As of today, I have six people signed up. I only have room for about twenty, so if you really want to come don't wait to sign up.
I don't think we will offer this class again this year because we are planning to do a class on "Preparing Herbal Remedies for the Cold and Flu Season" this fall. Although if there is still lots of interest we may try to squeeze one in.
As I mentioned, we did video tape the class and will make that available at our Farmer's Market and through mail order. I am skeptical though, as to how the video will turn out. It's hard to make a video when you are teaching a class. It would have been better to do the video alone because there were lots of side conversations during the class, but we may be able to edit it enough to make it somewhat professional....we'll see!
We have been thinking about offering other classes too. Mike and I had talked (last winter) about offering a class on making maple syrup, but we were not prepared enough, so we may offer the class next spring. But if there are other classes that would be helpful to you please let us know and we will see what we can do. It is our goal and passion to teach others how to better take care of themselves and how to become more self-sufficient. ;)