The sum of things.

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 Hey! I made back here finally,after a big sale at my work that left me wiped out and too tired to do much other than flopping on the couch once home.But despite the sale there are things to share.

 Two weeks ago our friends finally brought us their two turkeys.We had talked with them a long while ago about fostering them here,the geese at our friends house were beating the poor turkeys up until they had no tail feathers.

The first few days with the turkeys were an adventure for the birds and ourselves.The hens,well,they were puzzled and kept looking at the turkeys with a look that said “What in the heck are those bigger things?” The turkeys had to learn where they belonged which involved only one 6 AM wake up call.One morning they had popped themselves over the fence to the wrong side,they took a walk and then realized oops we don’t belong here.Help,help was their cry.Luckily  Chance and I heard them and jumped out of bed to bring them back.Chance clipped the turkeys wings and since then the turkeys have remained safe and sound in the coop run.

The turkeys now trust that the hens are not going to beat the crud out of them and that the coop is the place to be.I must say I am in love with their voices,they are kind of chatter boxes at times and always alert the rest of the birds that someone is coming.

The long-term plan for the turkeys is the tom will be ours to eat and the hen will be for our friends.We will split the cost of the extra feed.We ended up with the Tom because we are a larger family than our two friends household.

Chance and I taught our Chicken Butchering class a bit ago too.The class was small with only 3 students but it was nice any way.The smallness really gave us time to visit and talk as we went along.Our students did great even though one student had emailed and said she may cry.She didn’t cry.She was steady,calm and asked questions as she needed to. 

Chance and I are working on holding classes again in the spring.We hope to time things so that when chicks are available we will have our flyers up so as folks purchase their chicks our classes may be in their minds.We will then time the classes for when the chicks might be of butchering age. 

Not a lot of canning has happened here,sadly.With the sale at work ,extra days at work and being to wiped to do much it just has not been possible.

Chance did make some pretty awesome lacto-fermented pickles that we are happy with.Chance had made my Grandmothers canned pickles last summer on his own.We don’t know went wrong since he followed the recipe to a T but that batch of pickles only tasted of vinegar.(After this disappointment Chance wanted to try his “own” recipe.) We consulted with my Mom about the pickles flopping and she said she had  that happen before and it’s always been a canning  mystery to her.I think it was the ghost of my Grandmother being a pest.Canning was women’s work in her day,don’t mess with it.

We are finally eating daily out of our garden.We planted and replanted late this year but I was hedging my bets on the weather trend of being a full month behind staying true.It has and it all work out in the end.

I planted 6 heads of cabbage thinking it would be plenty and that was all the room I had this year.Next year I need to find room for more than 6.We’ve eaten 3 already because it is so good and sweet.I hope we can save 1 or 2 for some Sour Kraut.

Chance picked our first head of cauliflower yesterday.We like to eat it raw but since we will also have 6 heads of it,Chance wants to make a mixed pickle with some of it.

We’ve had no time to work on our plan to have a sane routine of having our own meat chickens or to make a final choice about Runner Ducks,tho’ I do think the ducks will most likely happen come spring. We’ve already figured out trying turkeys and if things stay smooth with them we will think of doing them again.

Here it is harvesting time and we are already looking to next spring.We hope to dig up more of our yard in the spring so we can grow even more of our own food.The way the economy has been going ( as in no where upward) and the fact that paying off 8 surgeries is going to take us another year or more we feel this is a smart move.We also worry about the security of the food in this country.It seems like trusting it to be safe is getting harder and harder daily.

We are not fanatics when it comes to food.Local always trumps organic.And some foods make no sense to worry about being organic.Um hello? Whats the point in eating  processed foods that are organic. And an organic cucumber from Mexico has to large of a carbon foot print that outweighs it being organic.But none the less we do worry about the food system here and want to know whats going into our bodies.

But because of our own personal economy we do sometimes have to make choices when it comes to food.Some times honestly as much as we would love to buy all local & organic the money is not always there.Really it is not there,end of story.

*I deleted a rant from here  about the many times I have been lectured by others about not eating an all organic diet and how much it pisses me off. It was a long bitter rant that maybe didn’t belong here.So don’t go there with me,you don’t walk in my shoes. 

Chance and I are trying really hard to make our own quiet statement that is part political and part philosophic.I am having a hard time summing these thoughts up into a neat and tidy package.It involves every part of how and why we live the way we do.How we live is like saying “No,I don’t like the way things are in the world so we are not going to play your game.” We know we are just one household in a small corner of the world but we hope that each person we reach out to will become a ripple.A ripple that will someday change the tides of how the world is functioning.

Rois

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About Hrafinstaad Homestead

We are an Urban Homestead located in Beaverton Oregon.We are all about growing,cooking,preserving and curing our own foods. From time to time we offer various classes that interest those who are wanting to learn basic homesteading skills.

2 responses »

  1. I read somewhere that cabbage is even sweeter after the first frost. The cold somehow concentrates the sugars. It makes me want to grow cabbage! I don’t like the stuff in the stores, but it might be different with home-grown. I don’t like store-bought tomatoes AT ALL, but the ones grown at home are more delicious than anything.

    • Stacy,I think I read that too. I am not too sure the cabbage will stay until the first frost but maybe if we leave one to just see if its true….hmmm theres an idea. And I would put homegrown cabbage right up there with the tomatoes but then again most things homegrown taste better than anything store bought.

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