MAUDE UPDATE AND SHEARING DAY-PLANTING PEAS-MAKING SALVE

17 04 2016

GREETINGS

Cool nights and warm days , just my kind of weather. Cleaning up brush and cutting up fallen branches has kept me busy this last week.  I see buds on some of the early tulips and others are peeking out of the ground.  The spring birds are back and I love hearing their cheerful songs.  A person in the neighborhood is trapping  and releasing all the skunks because they are digging up his yard.  I am sure he has gotten Cornelius as I have not seen him. Our neighborhood needs skunks to keep the rodent population down.  i am ever hopeful that Cornelius will find his way back.

MAUDE UPDATE AND SHEARING DAY

Maude has had a few setbacks and is on antibiotics again.    Shearing day took a lot out of her and now I am giving her  added minerals and sheep drench.  My Shearer Steve Marcotte did a wonderful job with her.   Shearing her in her pen so she wouldn’t have added stress.  It will take her a while to recover from this.  How do you like her poodle cut?IMG_6637

Lauren and I had to separate her from the rest of the flock when we saw the sheep doing their spring ritual ramming each other..  Of course this happened at 9 pm!!

The rest of the sheep did well with shearing and look good.  They are now not receiving grain much to their chagrin.

Steve has been my shearer for at least 15 years.  He raises sheep himself and has wonderful fleeces.  I am lucky to have found him after going through shearers who didn’t show up (really famous one) and others that were too busy even though you were on their schedule.  Steve always comes and does a great job I am grateful to have found him.

PLANTING PEAS

It seems its taken me forever to get these peas in the ground.  WHen I first wanted to get them in I uncovered the area and it was still frozen.    I have soaked them and in they go today.

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NOTHER BATCH OF HOT PEPPER SALVE

It seems it’s not quite the time to start another batch of hot pepper salve but I have run out.  I only could find a pound and a quarter of hot peppers and am looking for more.  Another 2 pounds would be good.  I found this salve to work well.  It’s not the sudden action of most pain relieving salves but it does the trick of releiving my arthritis pain. add peppermint oil at the end for a pleasant order.  I love the fact that I know exactly what is in it and its a lot cheaper than most brands of pain relieving salves.

Many thanks for reading my blog and I hope you are enjoying a lovely spring day wherever you are.  Carole

 

 

 

 





THE SHOW-DRYING PEPPERMINT -PRESENTS=A SURPRISE IN MY FRONT YARD

26 05 2015

GREETINGS

Clouds and sun today with temps soaring near the 90’s.  I am going to plant some herbs before it gets too hot.

THE SHOW

The show was great I think there was more people there  Something to see and do for every member of the family.  I saw so many old friends and co-workers and got rid of much of my weaving things.  Glad we had nice cool weather.

DRYING PEPPERMINT

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I am trying to get a head start on drying peppermint. Not only am I going to use it in teas but will use it in the chicken’s nesting boxes next winter.

PRESENTS

Three of my friends brought me three wonderful and different presents while I was at the fair/.

Lisa of Spinners Hill Farm brought me this wonderful pottery cullender with a llama on it in memory of Elliott.. We both know farm loss all to well, she lost her faithful dog companion this spring.  Her Mom helped me with my first rug hooking.  We see each other about once a year but keep in touch through-out the year via internet.

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I put this geranium in it till i can get it planted but plan to use it for draining fruit and herbs after washing them.  Just the right size for a quart of blueberries.  I have been collecting this pottery for years and love it.  I try to buy a few pieces every year this year it was plates.

My blogger friend Patti had another surprise for me.  Some caps for my Milk bottles.  I am so happy with them, what a great surprise.   SHe gets her milk delivered.  Its wonderful that in some communities that its still happening.

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And last but not east my friend Susan of SUsan’s Home and Garden brought me some wonderful rose scented geraniums.    They are very hard to find and she usually has a few.  I will use the dried leaves in many things.  

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To all a heartfelt thank you.

A SURPRISE IN MY FRONT YARD

Yesterday morning I gathered the first bunch of peppermint.  Walking back to the stairs I spotted this lone Lilly of the Valley.My Great-Grandmother had some in her yard and I just loved the smell.  It was such a nice treat to find this one.

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The year after I moved in here after trying to keep the hill mowed I started turning it all into bushes and flowers.  It has filed in nicely.  Last year I planted 2 lilac bushes which are doing well and the Bleeding Hearts love it here and are spreading.  I am always looking for things to fill in .  No lawn mowers and grass to contend with.  I do love the smell of a freshly cut lawn and sometimes wish I had some but then remember the mowing and am quickly glad that I don’t

Hope you have a wonderful day, many thanks for reading my blog.  Carole

 

 





WINTER-PLANTING PEAS, CHANGING THE GARDEN AROUND

26 04 2015

GREETINGS

Sammy taking it easy

Sammy taking it easy

Chris and I have been busy, the barn is totally cleaned and their drinking water is now outside making chores easier.  Some of the fallen tree wood and branches are in piles, part of the front hens yard is ready for clover planting and the clothes line is back up.  These are among the many things that got done with Chris here.  He also made me a new Whispering Pines  Farm Facebook store page which I will be working on.

WINTER

Even though winter is (hopefully) over its time for me to start preparing for next winter.  All the limbs and sticks that have fallen during this past winter need to be cut and put into bags for kindling for next winter.  I am hoping to burn wood and pellets during the day and oil at night next winter.  This year I went through about 20 bags of kindling.  I know I will need more this coming winter.  Nothing on the property gets wasted.

PLANTING PEAS

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Yesterday I planted two different varieties of peas.  One is a snow pea and the other is regular pod peas.  I am changing the gardens around this year and the peas were planted on the fencing that I had planted tomatoes before.  For the past two years the tomatoes have not been doing that well and I have had to buy tomatoes for freezing.  So this year peas will go along the fence.  The end of May I will be planting Cucumbers along the fence and by the time they start climbing I should have picked all the peas.  I hope to freeze most of the peas for good winter stews and soups.

Cindy came last night and She and Chris left this morning.  He will be back in the summer  I ll miss him

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Many thanks for reading my blog today and I hope you have a lovely day.  I leave you today with some more shearing pictures.

Lil had a wonderful time at shearing day

Lil had a wonderful time at shearing day

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ROSIES ARRIVES-HAY IN THE BARN-HUGE HEIRLOOM RADISHES-PLANTING MORE SEEDS

27 07 2014

GREETINGS

ROSIE ARRIVES

A trip to the Chicken Man’s house is always and adventure.

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 The coops were full of all shapes and sizes of birds.

A BEAUTIFUL BANTAM ROOSTER

A BEAUTIFUL BANTAM ROOSTER

 From the exotic to the normal everyday hens.

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 There were lots of Bantams but this time I wasn’t looking for Bantams.  I got a black sex-linked hen.  She will be a good layer.  She is shy and a little smaller than Samantha.  There is Chaos out in the hen yard today.  Everyone feels they are in the wrong place it will take a few days for things to settle down  I will have a picture of Rosie on my next blog.  There were beautiful bunnies there too.  They are very tempting.

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HAY IN THE BARN

Today  over 50 bales of hay were delivered.

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 Hay in the barn makes me so happy.  Just knowing I have enough for a while and knowing that I don’t have to bring it up the stairs brings joy to my heart.  He only has about 100 bales of second cutting to sell me and I will have to find someone else who will deliver.

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 I think I will advertise the end of August at the grain store.    An elevator is still on my wish list!

My son gave Chris great advise on stacking hay and why it can’t be packed too tightly.  Chris stacked them all and it was done within a half hour.  What a great day.

HEIRLOOM RADISHES

I found this beauty out  in the garden yesterday.

 

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Unfortunately there aren’t many there.  They were planted before the big rains and most of the seeds got washed away.  The soil here is so good now.  I planted some more lettuce mix, catnip and some beets the other day.  I think I will plant more beets today.  

LIL’s FIRST EAR OF CORN

Mmmmmm good

Mmmmmm 

 

We are expecting more bad weather this afternoon through tomorrow.  Heavy rains, thunderstorms, and more.  I really am thinking that a hoop house would be such a good idea and must put that on my list  for the spring.  Hope you have a wonderful day and many thanks for reading my blog;  Carole

 





CHINESE LANTERNS-MORE RAIN -THE GARDEN

5 07 2014

HAPPY FOURTH OF JULY

Today would normally be a day of celebration, parades and cook outs but the rains and thunderstorms have put the celebrating off till tomorrow.  The ditch that was dug in the sheep yard has held and so far no water in the barn.  What a relief.

Chinese Lanterns

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The little lanterns are growing , I will have a good supply this year

MOUNT TOM COAL PLANT AND THE TENNESSEE PIPELINE

I remember when the Coal plant was built, they had an  open house. In those days the dangerous effects of burning coal were either not known or not told.  After years of spewing out  poisons its closed.  It may become a solar field isn’t that ironic.

The Tennessee Pipeline wants to come right through western Massachusetts to supply more gas for people.  They will have a very hard time getting folks to agree to it.  What we do need from our government is leadership in finding other sources 

THE GARDEN

The garden is coming along nicely.  I have some tomatoes and basil.

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  The pumpkins and cukes are doing well.

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 I planted more dill, coriander, basil and some sunflowers today.  just digging an inch or so into the soil brought up so many huge earthworms.  

The black raspberries are getting ripe.

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I hope I can pick them before anyone else gets them.   Many thanks for reading my blog on this rainy day, hope the sun is shinning wherever you are.  Carole

 





PLANTING BEANS-LIL-MOVING STRAWBERRIES INTO THE HERB BED-DYING WOOL WITH DANDELIONS

22 05 2014

HELLO

PLANTING STRING BEANS

We are expecting showers for the next few days so I though yesterday would be a good day to get one of the bean towers planted.  I have decided to put both of the towers in the front of the house.

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 I moved raspberries to the back of the fence and transplanted some garlic that I couldn’t find last year.  Sometimes the transplanting works and other times it doesn’t.  

Moving the Strawberries

In the side gardens the strawberries have multiplied and moved themselves into pathways.  I decided that the Herb Bed would be the place to put them , it would be much easier to protect them from birds there.  Still have more to move.

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Dyeing wool with Dandelions

I love natural dyeing and the first  years of spinning were devoted to natural dyeing.  I sold dye seeds at shows and grew most of them in my large garden.  I am glad to be coming full circle and getting back to it again.  I will be looking at tag sales this summer for a small copper pot to do some dyeing in.

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I simmered the dandelions in my iron pot for approximately one hour and let them cool in the pot, then simmered the wool in the dye water for about the same time.  I would have liked the color to be a little deeper so I am simmering more dandelions in the same dye bath.  I do like the color that the yellow Shetland yarn yielded.

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LIL

Lil was given a kitchen set and she just loves it.  Here is a picture of her with her Sheep pocket-book.  I have one too.

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Many thanks for reading my blog and I hope you day is wonderful.  Carole

 

 

 

 





DANDELIONS-BABY CHICKS-MINNIE-SCENES FROM BACK ROADS

21 05 2014

HELLO

It’s a bright, beautiful day here at the farm, with rain coming in this afternoon.  The weekend of the 40th Massachusetts Sheep and Wool Fest is promised to be beautiful.

DANDELIONS

Yesterday was hay pick up day.  I made two trips to Joe’s  to get 5 bales at a time.  After I picked up the first load I decided to pick some dandelions.  There were many by the dirt roadside.  I picked about half a pot  full and plan to make dye today using my iron pot.  It should come out a moss-green.  I do love gathering dye stuffs in the wild.  It’s a quiet task and the sounds of the forests are delightful.

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BABY CHICKS

They are doing well in their new surroundings. Only one chick had to be helped up to the nest box.

CHICKEN LITTLE

CHICKEN LITTLE

There was a stare down between Peppers (who is almost the same size as Mama) and Morticia.  It lasted almost a minute.  I heard a squawk and then saw the stare down,   I am sure she was saying,  even though you are as big as me I am still the Mother.

PLANTING FLOWERS

I bought some wild flower seeds to plant in Sadie’s Place.  I want something that will be beautiful this summer but also come back year after year.  Lil wanted to help and she had the shovel and a little rake.  It will be a great spot for us to pick some bouquets later in the summer.

MINNIE

I can no longer feel her backbone, what a remarkable recovery.  She is so much  happier now.IMG_3081

 

Many thanks for reading my blog today and I hope you have a wonderful day.  I am leaving you with views one from Colrain and the other from Shelburne.  The one from Colrain looks to the north and you can see Vermont and New Hampshire from here.  The other view is to the South where you can see Mount Tom which is in my hometown of Holyoke.    Carole

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