Monday, June 29, 2009

Menu Plan Monday

Monday-Pork Chop Bake
Thursday-Out to eat with friends and Mac is staying overnight with their kids at our mutual friends
Friday-Brats and french fries

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Cheap Stain Remover and Detergent

Farming is dirty there is no way around it. A bottle of Shout was not lasting very long around here when I had to start washing Kurt's barn clothes. Before we were married, I had started washing my barn clothes with Palmolive Oxy using a tablespoon for each load. I was not using any other detergent and my clothes were coming out cleaner. Once I was faced with the daunting task of cleaning Kurt's pants, which had manure and iodine stains. I turned to my dish soap. Putting a dab on the stain and rubbing it over the area. It was like magic, stains be gone! You do not want to get carried away though because a tablespoon creates plenty of suds. I only use my dish soap now for stain removal and use half of what they recommend for my regular detergent.

This Works for Me. Go see what works for others!

Friday, June 19, 2009

Cherry Fluff and Cherry-Topped Icebox Cake

I have three cans of cherry pie filling in my cupboard. Ninety-nine percent of the time I buy it to use on these two recipes. Or Black Forest Cake...I forgot about that one. Good thing I have three cans. Check out the Recipe Swap for other ideas.

Cherry Fluff

1 can of cherry pie filling
8 to 16 oz whipped topping depending on your preference
1 can sweetened condensed milk
Can crushed pineapple, drained
Chopped walnuts or pecans, optional.

Fold together all ingredients making sure all is incorporated. Cover and refrigerate for atleast four hours.

Cherry-Topped Icebox Cake

20 whole graham crackers
2 cups cold milk
1 pkg instant vanilla or chocolate pudding
8-oz whipped topping
1 can cherry pie filling

Combine pudding mix and milk together according to package instructions. Let stand five minutes and blend in whipped topping. Set aside. Line 9x13 cake pan with single layer of graham crackers. Spread half of pudding on top of crackers. Lay another layer of crackers over pudding. Spread remaining pudding over crackers and cover with another layer of crackers. Spread pie filling over crackers. Chill for atleast four hours. The crackers get soft and it is so good!

Monday, June 15, 2009

What's Happening Hot Stuff

Name that movie! Back to me the girl on the farm who has poop on some part of her most times of the day. Just being honest. I will be showering today...been awhile. Kidding. School has been out for a full week now and summer school started last Wednesday and runs through the end of the month. Believe it or not it is a very popular program with some fun and educational classes. Maclayne goes for two hours in the morning and she is taking introduction to computers and second grade readiness. I was thinking of signing her up for the magic with books class but it did not work out. I also though two hours of summer school to be plenty. It runs from 8 to Noon. Then in the afternoons she has swimming lessons for 25 minutes Monday through Thursday. Each session runs for two weeks. Last year she only went to the first session because we were kind of busy but this year I am hoping to get her to all four. Plus there is soccer Tuesday and Thursdays. That is just what I have to keep up with on Maclayne's end.
Then there are the girls in the barn. I am not even going to go there. When does school start?

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Menu Plan Monday

I feel like patting myself on the back. I really need to go grocery shopping and have become creative with using what food we have. I did not take the easy way out. Yay me! Somethings from last week I did not make either because we had something else or leftovers. We did get food for lunch twice from a restaurant. Taco Bell on Friday and Wednesday we got pizza. I have card that allows you to buy a large specialty pizza at regular cost and then you receive a free medium one topping pizza. The card was $20 and there are many other great deals but if you just do the pizza deal your card has been paid for. There a deal for DQ BOGO for blizzards that now we did the pizza has definetly paid for our card. We can still do the pizza deal four more times and the DQ is endless until August. Not too shabby. Anyway we are trying real hard to eat home as much as possible. It is our anniversary on Sunday so we are going out to eat for that. I'm looking forward to it.

Monday-Crispy Ranch Chicken, potatoes, and a veggie (from last week)


Wednesday-Swiss Steak, potatoes, and a veggie (from last week)


Friday-Graduation party

Saturday-Surprise birthday party so food leftover from that if we are still hungry

Check out what is happening here and for more menu ideas here

First Crop Hay

Our first crop of haylage was safely put in our silo and the unloader put down last Friday. The quality of first crop haylage can make or break milk production. It was crucial this year that we put in something close to "rocket fuel" because we need all the milk the girls can make.

Kurt is cutting the itty, bitty little field to the north of our house. This field is not shaped like a square so when he went around once he turned around by the the shed and came back the other way. I guess it is easier.

We dug up a hay field that was needing to be reseeded this week and planted corn. So Kurt only has one regular square field of hay to cut and two irregulars. We might have a fourth one that is square to cut if there is third or fourth crop of hay. It is seeded down with our oats. So we will harvest our oats anywhere from mid-July to early-August. Then hopefully the alfalfa we planted will come back for this years crop otherwise it should be ready for next year.

This field has more grass than alfalfa. When we chop the hay we chop a little of this field then go chop the field behind the barn that has more alfalfa so is mixed. There was some other reason but I forgot. Kurt told me of course, but he tells me a lot through out each day.

This is the hay head to our chopper. The roller on the bottom rolls the hay up and in with the help of the auger and it goes through a series of sharp knives that chop the hay.

The curved part on the chopper shoots the hay into the chopper box or wagon-whatever you want to call it. Kurt's dad likes to chop. I tried it once when I was first dating Kurt. We were in the triange shaped field and you have move the spout with little switches in the tractor when you are not going in a straight line. Since the wagon is following and if you do not, you will miss the chopper box. I think I went maybe 50 to 80 feet and proclaimed that is was going way too fast for me. Maybe next year I'd be willing to chop. The triange field will be corn so I won't have to worry about that beast.

This is Kurt unloading the wagon. An opening on the side feeds haylage via an auger and apron on the bottom of the wagon to the blower. The blower is ran by a PTO which stands for power take off. You can see the end of the PTO which is the white piece that is in the middle far right of the picture. It is a bar that is about six feet long that spins when the PTO in the tractor is engaged. It is very, VERY dangerous to be around. Loose clothing could easily become entangled. People have had limbs ripped off, etc. It is something you take extra care around to be as cautious as possible. The PTO is attached to a tractor that is in park but running with the throttle wide open. It is very loud. The wagon Kurt is unloading is also ran by a PTO to unload the wagon which is hooked up to another tractor. The throttle is turned on as high as the tractor that is running the blower.

Here is close up of the haylage going in the blower which is an auger that is running very fast to feed the haylage to the blower part that send it vertical up the silo pipe and down into the silo. Our silo is only 50 feet. The average haylage silo around our farm is about 70 to 80 feet. There are 100 feet silos which are huge. Kurt would like to have a 20 foot (which is the diameter) by 80 foot haylage silo if we had double the cows. Our haylage silo is 16' x 50'. Back to the blower. This a very dangerous piece of machinery when running. That is all I am going to say the horror/true stories are awful to think or tell. Anything can happen on a farm and thankfully we had a safe first crop harvest.

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Menu Plan Monday

I'm back to try this again. I think I did okay last week without a blogged meal plan. This week I will not be going grocery shopping because the milk check does not come until next week and we have plenty of food. We might run out of milk but I'm pretty sure I know someplace where I can get some for free. It's four percent butterfat and unpasteurized but we'll survive. The weather has been about 10 degrees cooler than normal so warm, filling meals are insight.

Sunday-Pork Loin Roast in the crockpot with saurkraut, carrots, and box potatoes
Tuesday-Spaghetti because Kurt has a meeting and he claims spaghetti is too much work(he watched me type this and just shrugged his shoulders)
Thursday-Hot ham and cheese sandwhiches and tomato soup
Friday-Tator tot casserole or Swiss Steak in the crockpot
Saturday-Crispy Ranch Chicken, mashed potatoes, and green beans

For more menu ideas head over to OrgJunkie

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Random Pictures

Here is the hanging basket I bought on Memorial Day. Is looks even more impressive in-person. Maclayne picked it out, but my goodness the price of them is enough to turn you off flowers completely. Yuck. I bought mine from a greenhouse not one that is setup at a Walmart or Shopko, etc. Which I think the ones from greenhouses are a little healthier/nicer/not so commercial? I don't know all I guess I can tell Kurt when he questions how much I paid for it is what he tells me. Price equals performance. There, ha! Eat your words Kurty. : )

My favorite cat. She came from down the road as a kitten almost a year ago. I thought she was so homely looking. I was wondering too what am I going to do with this wierd looking creature. Go figure. I named her Rat. I know very nice huh? She looked like one as a kitten and besides we have another female named Mouse. It works and she has been spayed. Remember to control the pet population!

Our fragrant lilac bushes that are near the house were looking so pretty Memorial day. Now they are brown and not so nice. Maclayne picked me a couple bunches while they were at their peak.

Saturdays Here

Way back before Kurt had to get this part-time job and mess up my sleeping schedule, I actually did stuff. You know like blog, clean my house on a regular basis, cook meals more exciting than the frozen variety, and watch That's so Raven and Hannah Montana on Saturday mornings after chores. Which we use to get in around 8:30 or 9 from chores just in time for me to be a kid with my seven-year-old and eat pancakes with sausage or bacon. Now fast forward almost two months. I am home alone. I was in from the barn at 7:30am and I am wondering where in the heck my FIL is. He offered to come out and run the feed wagon and clean the barn so the cows could be outside before Kurt was back home. At the rate we are going I think Kurt and I will be cleaning the barn...Rant...When someone offers to do something I expect them to come do and be done. I could have had the cows outside already. One more thing...he did this to us the morning after our wedding. Offered to come and clean the barn, feed the cows, get the cows out etc since we had someone else milking for us. We woke up at 8:30 or so and were wondering what was going on. Cows weren't out and come 9am Kurt went outside and that's when his dad showed up. Ahhh. Enough : ) I need to go take a nap but I sit here wondering if I shouldn't just go back outside but I need sleep, ahhh. Five and a half hours is not enough sleep for me.

Here is a turkey egg (I think) we found where we pile our manue when we can not spread it on the fields. It is an open area that is surrounded by trees. FYI there is no manure back there now just mud. We found it a week and half ago and went back Thursday to see if we could find it. Did have my camera with but I found a cracked empty shell a few feet from where we found the intact egg. Cool huh?!

Tuesday, June 2, 2009


Is this not the oddest picture? It is from Maclayne's birthday party and Sally (and everyone else not in the picture) are beginning to sing "Happy Birthday." I bet you never knew you needed to take a deep breath to begin that song?! Sally sings for A LOT of weddings, funerals, and at church so she might have felt a little pressure to perform. So Sally is turning 50 July 17 and I am helping her husband and sons plan a surprise party for her on June 20th. The cover is that we are having a first wedding anniversary party since the next day is June 21st. She took the bait hook, line, and sinker when I invited her and her family to it. Sally read two passages from the Bible. Very appropriate ones I must say. I told her she could even bring her Bible and reread us the verses if she liked. I will have to start buying supplies for that in a week and half or so.

Then there is the little girl who is being held by her dad. That is Ellie. She turned 3 yesterday. She was born two months early and if I could figure out how to upload a scanned picture I would show you how tiny she was when she was born. I think she weighed 2 pounds--TINY. She is also my niece and her dad is my brother. Happy Birthday Ellie! Happy Birthday Sally...oh my mom's birthday is on June 21st too and her name is Sally. Are you confused yet???