Woody Beets…

I am a huge fan of trying new seeds and growing new strains and kinds of plants in the garden, sometimes its a huge success and sometimes its a big old flop, it won`t grow, or it does but I am pushing the planting in terms of weather or days, and its just starting to produce an bam.. Frost … all dead

but I was sad about these ones, they will get one more try this coming year.. mainly because they grew so well and I am leary on if they got harvested at the right time or not.. or what happened at all in the end of the garden season.

You see while I have notes on things up until I fell and broke bones, I am truly unsure of what the watering was like afterwards to harvest time, now we have really nice regular rains, so in truth, that does not really cut it with me..

I really! dislike plants that need to be babied at that stage in the game.. as seeds, yes, as wee tikes ok.. as bigger.. DEAL .. LOL

now that other thing that can cause woody beets is overgrown..  they don`t look over grown in terms of what they should be, but I don`t know when they were taken out of the ground, because I was in alberta..

So did they come out late… it would have been a matter of weeks at most.. Again.. really, I don`t like that fussy of a plant.. Sometimes , I like to stagger havesting of beets and I have never had a issue..

IF anyone know of other reason`s for woody beets, I am all ears..

These get one more try this coming summer and if they do it again.. they get moved to the black list of DO NOT GROW :)

the pigs and the hounds are really enjoying them though.. yum, yum


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The report came out today.. interview on the radio

Is anyone really surprised that the price of food is going up, and that the packaging is expected to continue to go down.. I am good on the beef, pork, milk and eggs, and I will once again increase my production of fruit and veggies..

Specifically, the report notes meat prices skyrocketed last year, jumping 12.4 per cent. Fish prices also jumped, by 5.9 per cent, and are expected to go up again this year as sustainably minded consumers look for specific products.

Bacon-loving Canadians paid the most, as prices jumped 25 per cent. Ham and pork chops also climbed by 18 per cent.`

Really if things went up between 6 to 25 percent this year, and they say that next year we can expect another..

Forecasts and expected price increase:
•Meat – 3% to 5%
•Fish & Seafood: 3% to 5%
•Dairy & Eggs: -1% to 1%
•Grains: 0% to 2%
•Fruit & Nuts: 1% to 3%
•Vegetables: 3% to 5%
•Restaurant Foods: 1% to 3%
How is this small increases! On the interview, it was interesting that he said, that while there was more farmers markets then ever, but that the average person only spends 38 dollars per visit, and there for it was NOT effecting the bottom line for the big stores.. hmmm

Also he said, the only way to save was to cook but as the host said, if meat, fish and veggies are all going up in price, how does home cooking make a difference in that.. good point..

While I am firm believer in real food, I can already see that at times, it CAN be cheaper to buy the cheap on sale pre-made this or that, then buy and make.. this is something that we could see in the north, but not down here.. but its slowly creeping in! SAD! just sad..


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A little yard cleanup..

Yesterday was a awesome day..  we had a break in the weather, while my dear family out in alberta is truly in winter, we should not quite have winter here yet but its been darn right nippy out there..

So it was a true blessing yesterday when we had a lovely plus 8 day..  We loaded Glenda in the morning and got her taken to the butcher, I have asked for her horns back, as I plan to make homemade buttons with them, otherwise she will hang for two weeks before being done, so while she has gone, I have some time before pickup time.

We got the winter water trough with heating moved and made ready for the horse’s and sheep..  Also spent a good amount of time getting Kermit moved to his own pen, little apple is growing quite slow compared to where I believe she should be at, but each cross and breed is going to grow at their own rates..

Kermit on the other hand is HUGE, as in now bigger then Miss Piggy.. its a good thing that pig is super sweet and lovely in temperament, but I watched him pick up a 2 by 4 and snap it, just for fun while he was playing..

Rabbits also got some time, hutches where cleaned out, scraped,  poo was hauled to the garden into piles in different area`s for use next year.. Kits and growout rates where checked, I have two expecting does at this time.

However the big part of the day was taken up with yard cleanup!

The last of the big bale of straw was hauled down for big bedding, now we will need to move over to the smaller square bales, it was a bad year for our regular supplier in terms of straw, thankful that we have the ability to get more from where we get our grain.

A huge amount of yard rake up was done and at least 24 wheelbarrels of leaves, old hay, old straw and bird poo etc has been hauled into the big garden.

I still tired much faster then my hubby did but he pointed out that I was able to go for six hours solid, so when I thought about it, that is pretty good really.. Still not normal but not bad at all..

I did go to bed very early and slept the sleep of a tired girl..

This morning was awesome, got up and had a normal morning, started house chores, did the purrpots and the hounds, then the hounds and I headed outdoors, they ran around and I did morning rounds.. rabbit checks, letting the birds out to free range, puttered around, checked on the horse`s and the sheep, did one small yard job.

Back in the house, laundry started, canning prep on the go, meat out and ready for meal planning and bread started..

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Coming together..

Glenda booked in- Check

Ordered the sheep tags- Check

Ordered the coming lambing season`s required goodies (my first lamb could be here as early as the end of Dec)- Check

Booked the lambs in for butcher- Check

Booked one pig in for butcher-Check

Looked at the price of freezer -Yikes

Figured out which ducks are to be butchered- Check

Moved the fowl from summer pens to winter pens-Check

Figured out how many rabbits need to be butchered- Ready NOW-18, ready by the first of the year, another 10

Ordered in a few more things for tanning-check

Offered to help a girlfriend work on tanning full wool on sheep hides(she wants to brain tan) and I want to play!-Check

Got the ferrier booked-Check

Got the winters supply of hot chocolate on the sale-Check (but don`t think I didn`t notice that the packaging went down, while the price regular went up, so even on sale, it was still not as good of buy as last year)-Check

Getting back into the grove of things in terms of the house-Check

Need to do a whack of canning-Check LOL

Start Christmas Shopping-Check

Fall Cleaning of Windows-Check

O yes, I can see some light at the end of the tunnel!

O I know, there is so much more to do.. but at least I can see some of the things that should have been done weeks and weeks ago are starting to get there! :)

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An the wind blows!

Well compared to others, the farm got off pretty luck in the winds over the past 24 hours, I have seen photos of tree`s down on facebook, I have read the reports of the damage on CBC and I have listened to the reports of thousands without power in our local area.

We appear to have gotten off with a little rabbit adventure and two roofs ripped right off our hutches..

I take the blame on this one, in truth the hutches lids could have used new hardware this summer, its on the hit list but you see in the spring, after the thaw, we move the rabbit hutches from their winter area to their summer digs..

It takes two people to carry a hutch and then get moved to under one of our big old tree`s, soft dappled shade and I tend to face them so they will get the warm summer winds, but normally in the fall, they get moved back to the winter digs..

The winter spot is on the backside of the little barn, it gives them the most winter sun but blocks the wind on two sides and it faces a direction that rarely see`s wind or weather come in facing it, plus it sits half under a overhang for even more added protection as the indoor parts of the hutch is the closest part to the wall.

but between me being broken, gone to alberta and sick, we have not got them moved, so this morning, the roof-lids where off and down on the ground and few of the kit rabbits had made the jump, most had the sense to stay in the nice safe with their mother.

So we will need to do a bit of a roundup and possible fish net or live trap being brought out to give a helping hand.

otherwise, with this warm wind, I have aired the house out, and have a lovely ham with winter turnip, cabbage and onion roasting off in the oven today.

It seems like a proper meal for a late fall day… What is one of your favorite fall meals, and did you get nailed with the winds..

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Pig Trace Tags.. Sigh

So I have booked Glenda in for butcher, she is very close to coming two and I don`t want to carry her over the winter, (that brings us to the freezer and the work that is coming on those on a different post) and I had planned on sending in at least one of my big pigs.

I am deeply sad to say that Miss Piggy will at some point be going for butcher, it cost`s me around 1000 plus a year to feed, bed and look after my `breeding pigs` if they give me at least one full litter per year, I consider it covered but be it Miss Piggy`s fault or Kermit`s fault, bottom line, I am sinking good money after bad, the vets all agree, if you don`t breed the female`s as they get older, they won`t breed..

Which is where I am sitting, ideally I will breed Apple when she is old enough with Kermit, and if still no piglets, then Kermit goes next, and I will give Apple one more try with a different boar.

So I went to book my big pig in and nope.. turns out we now have a pig trace program in effect and I need to register the farm with such and such id, and then register the pigs in the pig trace program and then buy adult and piglet tags in sets of way more then I would need in like ten years at a time..

Which all needs to be done before I can even book a hauler or a butcher, and each part of the process is a 2 to 4 weeks to process the paperwork..

Its new and its a pain in the rear.. but I am grateful that friends informed me of it.. I like raising my own pork, but at this point, I am really leaning hard towards just trying to find a good source of piglets and just buying one or two per year like we use to..

I am truly thinking that breeding my own and just a few extra for farm gate sale is going to be something of the past. This makes me sad to be honest but no matter how I move the numbers, between the cost of the feed, the bedding, the cost of buying weaner piglets, the increase costs in hauling, butcher costs etc. I would have to raise my per pound price far to much.

and while I could try and raise more of my own pig food, the truth is, I don`t have time to add more to the gardens..

If I am only raising them to normal market weight, then for my own use, I can just butcher at home. I will be honest, I can`t do Miss Piggy myself, I can`t look that sweet pig in the eye on this one.. I am going to be wreck on the day she goes to the butcher.


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Spending money to save in the long run.. New Washing Machine

Well, first a little health update, had to go back this week to the doctor, I needed a adjustment on my inhalers, they added in a long acting one twice a day and increased my rapid response one use per day. Wow, what a huge difference, I can breath!

Side note: normally because I have bare floors, and lots of critters, I tend to lean towards a broom, dust pan and mop.. but I was told to consider getting a vacuum with a hepa filter in order to help with not breathing in the dust, and dander while cleaning, and my dear mom recommended EO oils on the filter, I choose a nice citrus and so not only has it made a difference in me being able to clean with less breathing issues, the house smells very nice after I do it. I got a vacuum that is made for bare floors.. and I can see a difference.

As luck (ha ha) would have it, my second secondhand to me washing machine broke while I was gone and while hubby limped along dealing with it, and taking cloths to town, I can`t stand it, I need to wash the critters bedding x amount of time weekly, I need to keep up on the laundy. I need a working washing machine.

Now I am sure if you are in Ontario or even if you are not, that you have noticed that the cost of power is going up, up and UP. So my wonderful cheap buys at the farm sales of older sturdy machines are great in many ways but not typically on the power bill.

I decided that given the fact that they have said point blank, that the Ontario government intends to raise the power rates by 40 percent over a five year period and we are only now in year one of it, that I need to look at replacing my older models with newer more cost effective ones..

The big ones in the house are washer, dryer (for winter and work cloths) fridge, I did the stove last year, so off we went looking at ACK, black Friday in Canada sale`s and there was a very basic nice, really cheap machine, top loader, did everything I wanted but not so great on the power savings, it used four times more energy per year then the better brand that was also on sale for a mear hundred more..

Now the four times more was till a lot better then the one`s we have been using.. but I put out the extra money and should save.. around 800 plus kilowatt hours of power per year with the new machine..

The matching new dryer will have to wait a bit but will be added in soon.. Then I need to hunt down a fridge I like, I love my fridge but I know what it uses for power and it really does need to be replaced. but it can ideally be moved to a safe spot and be turned on as a backup fridge for canning-harvest season..

Does anyone own a all fridge and do you like it and if so why, what don`t you like about it..

Well, I had better be off to check that load and get another one started :) Happy Washing day.. Clean sheet night tonight on the bed LOL


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