Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Project Appleseed shoot coming up in August!

Once again, my family is hosting a Project Appleseed shoot here at the farm (the picture is from the shoot we had earlier in the year--see Michael & I?). It will likely be the last one of the year here in North Dakota, so if interested, this is the one to come to!

We have 3 families (all personal friends) who have said that they're coming already, so this looks to be a very fun shoot (we play volleyball/games in the evenings and have potluck suppers).

When: August 13th-14th, 2016
To preregister or learn more about Appleseed shoots, you can go to the website
 or just leave me a comment if you have questions:

Hope to see some of you there!

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Photo update (the only kind I seem to make time for these days):

The Project Appleseed shoot went well, except for the strong wind both days which made it very challenging to shoot accurately. 

 Michael shot both days and I shot parts of both days (when I wasn't loaning my rifle to another shooter).
 Last month, it was time to buy more bottle (pail) calves in Mandan. I was babysitting that day, so we took the Littles with us for a field-trip of Kist's Livestock. :)
 On the cat-walk... (I was carrying the little tyke).
One of the 2 heifer calves we bought:
 It wasn't long before that when we bought 3 Nubian does (one is a doeling) and a registered Nubian billy goat. They're all super friendly. I'm milking Peanut (the darker colored doe) twice a day. 
Buttercup is the mother of little Annie.

Vonn and Peanut...
 The girls and the girls...
 Michael sheared all of our Shetland ewes and the ram. He finished up the day that....
 Heather and Rachel came to visit and have a "Wool day". We were a 'pickin and a grinnin'. :) Oh, and a cardin'. Heather bought 3 of our Shetland lambs.
 We took them fishing (I should say boating, as we didn't catch any fish), and Josephine came along too.
 Our boat had quite a load with the 5 of us in it. It was a beautiful evening for a ride on the lake.

 Michael found another tractor to buy: An Oliver this time.
It was down in Ashley. I was babysitting that day as well, so we took the Littles along again.

After paying for the tractor, we went for a picnic in the park. Of course, we had to play for a little while.

Our sheep, Drusilla had a ewe lamb! :)  I got to be there to see it be born. We named her Dinah. 

For the first time ever, I experimented with making cold-process soap (which means dealing with lye, which is dangerous, but interesting). I made 2 batches: 1 with goat's milk and 1 without. 
It has to cure for at least 4 weeks, so I still haven't been able to try it.
 Oscar (the llama) has settled down nicely and has taken to eating grain out of a dish I hold out to him and I touch his head every time he comes forward to get a bite. Hopefully he'll get used to that and settle down even more.
 Beretta knows how to cool off: lie down in the sheep's water troughs. She's being a naughty girl and delights in chasing chickens, so then she gets tied up until we can keep an eye on her.
 Michael and I went fishing over at Alkaline lake and my honey caught 1 Walleye.
We went back to our other favorite spot to go in the evenings and Josephine and Tina met us there to go out on the boat with us. Michael caught a Northern that night.
 Bought some goldfish to put in the stocktanks to keep the algae down.
 I have lots of kefir grains available these days, so let me know if you're interested. 
I also have Kombucha scobies that I could share.
 Michael, Jacob and I went to the Linton demolition derby.

 Our sour bush-cherries were ripe, so I made a pie (and need to make 1 more today with the last of the cherries).
 Michael and I went to the Mandan rodeo on the 3rd of July.
 A rain/hail storm rolled through during the rodeo and everyone went to their vehicles.
 The rain made the rodeo event all the more interesting with all that slippery mud for the cowboys and girls to deal with!
 Our 17 turkey poults....
 ...and 35 assorted chicks that now reside in our laundry room.
 Thought we'd try something different and milked Ivy out in the pasture where she spends the daylight hours (we lock her in a closer pasture overnight). Michael had to get a rope over her head and we tied her to the 4-wheeler, but then she held very still. We decided it wasn't our favorite way of milking, so that might be the only time we ever do that.
Michael's brother and his wife made this sign for us. We finally bought some varnish and Michael put several coats on it before hanging this plaque on our house.
 On Father's Day, Michael and I (Jacob came over and helped after a while too) set up the swimming pool. What a fun and refreshing place to hop in on a hot day. It takes a little time every day to keep it operating well (keep it clean, wash the filter out, add salt when needed...), but is well worth the time.
My flower bed.
 The corn/squash/pumpkin/potato garden....  We planted corn in 3 different setting so hopefully will have sweet corn coming ripe at different times.
 It's been wonderful gardening with my husband!  I suppose his help will be greatly diminishing from here on out as he and my dad and brothers will now be busy getting the grain cleaning plant (Mid Dakota Grain) set up the way they want it to be. Yesterday, the great big gravity table they bought arrived from CA. They bought another medium sized one from Fargo. They're up there today actually, starting with moving cleaners and legs and augers......around. It's going to be a huge project, getting it all set up for much faster cleaning. They should be able to clean a lot more grain at once so hopefully the work days will be shorter during cleaning season and yet they'll be getting more done.

Anyway, here is our main garden, up by the house.  We started getting some zucchini and kohlrabi now. The raspberries are ripening too and I've been busy making different kinds of jam. We've been eating lots of lettuce/kale salads for quite a while already. 
Other projects for the Summer/Fall:

Build my parent's a garage
Reshingle our house roof
Pour cement for shop/buildings that we took down in SD last Fall/Winter
Host one more Appleseed shoot

Also, we plan to take 3 days off to go for a family vacation to Medora! :)

Lots to do....
But not all of life is work.  In the evenings, Michael and I read together or, lately, we've been watching the "Wonders of God's Creation" videos (very neat!). 

OH! My mom hosted a "Damsel in Defense" party for a friend on Sunday. If you want to know more, just ask her or me. They have some pretty neat self-defense products at very reasonable prices 
(and it's a Christian company). 

Now, I'd best get back to work!!