Friday, August 26, 2011

Catch up, again, on Shelley Hill Farm

Nothing much too new going on.  Caught Rob and Raymond on the front deck each with a turkey in their lap.  The midget white turkeys are quite friendly and jumped right up to be petted.

Rob was in the process of taking apart the large turkey tractor to make three smaller ones to move the meat chickens we are in the process of getting.  Below are Monica and Rachel, who decided they liked our side of the fence better and to keep them in one spot, it became the "goat" tractor.  bwahahahahaha

These are the newest meat chickens, purchased yesterday from a family up out of Bellingham.  They are about three weeks old.  We will be getting a few more this weekend.

Below would be the midget white turkeys and the three roosters from the Delaware chicks we hatched out in their new tractor.  The roosters will be raised for meat.  We are not sure of the sexes of the turkeys yet, though pretty sure there are at least two toms if not all four.  If we do have a hen, then we will keep one tom for a breeding pair.

Rachel is out yet again as I type, really need to fix/move the fence, again.  So she is "imprisoned" in the empty tractor again, hence the name "goat" tractor.  lol

Got one load of laundry off the line and the next one up.  Making yogurt today and two loaves of bread are waiting for the oven to preheat to be baked.


Monday, August 15, 2011

Sunny Day! YAY!

This is the all red buck we have left out of all the babies.  He is turning really dark on his head, neck and chest.   He's very cute and friendly though.  

These are the tomato plants with lots of flowers, though don't see any fruit yet.  There are so many because I planted them four to a group thinking some would die.  Well, as you can see, none did die, which is very nice, but will make for lots of tomatoes if they ever get any.  haha

These are the pepper plants, there are red, orange, yellow and Nardello peppers, which are kinda skinny and red and orange I believe.  Anyway, they are doing super with lots of flowers also, though no fruit yet either.  The tomatoes on one side and the pumpkins on the other side are trying to take them over, but I keep moving everything out of the way.

These would be the sugar pumpkins we planted.  I believe there are four plants in this small planter, so they decided they need to stretch their legs and run over the edges.  We just move them towards the planter when it is time to mow.

These are the lemon cukes that are finally getting flowers on them and getting larger.  These I transplanted, but they all died, so the ones in the pictures we picked up as starts from the Co-Op in Mount Vernon, still organic, though, yea!

These are the pickling cucumbers that were shaded way too much by the zucchini right next to them, so I trimmed some of the leaves to give them some sunshine and they are starting to flower also.

This is one of the heads of heads of cauliflower that we harvested.  I think we have gotten about 2 now and 2 have gone to the goats and Marty, as they were eaten by bugs before we could pick them.

This would be the butternut squash that is taking over the planter.  I looped it up on the fencing that the snap peas were using and it is still going strong.

And this is the new garden area that will be planted with wheat this fall which is right around the corner, though it really does not seen like summer has been here yet.

This is the mangel patch.  Lots and lots of mangels hopefully to feed the chickens and the pigs.

In the middle of the mangels are two acorn squash plants that are thriving.  Flowers but no squash yet.

This would be one of the corn plants that survived the chickens.  Not sure what kind, but hopefully will get a couple of ears.

And this is another of the corn plants that survived the chickens.  I believe this is either popcorn or Hopi blue which is for flour.

Yesterday we had a wood cutting party.  Liam and I stacked the cut wood, Mom and Rob cut the rounds using the wood cutter and Raymond manned the fire for the too old and bark.

Rob put the rounds in and turned them to be cut and Mom controlled the lever that moved the blade forward and back.

Here's where the wood stacks started at.  We ended up with two front and back of the pallets and one sideways in the middle.

And that would be all the wood cut that day.  Probably like 2 cord Rob said.  The other side of the wood shed is full of more rounds, so there will be another cutting party soon.  lol

And today, the Mini hit 100,000, however I was not paying attention and did not catch it for a photo until 100,006.  Oh well, it's still chugging along very nicely.

Off to feed the animals and milk the goats.  Later!

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Catch up on Shelley Hill Farm......

Busy, busy, busy around here lately.

Garden news - After removing the large pile of dirt/stinging nettles/blackberries behind the garage, we now have more garden area!  Yeah!

We will be moving the sprawling plants, zucchini, squash, potatoes and such there this next year.  However, I got some wheat seed that we are planting this fall and then harvesting this next spring and then will plant more garden.

These are the broccoli and cauliflower out of the garden.  They were both delicious!

In the garden, we are now getting green beans, zucchini both yellow and green, and the sugar pumpkins and butternut squash are really going gangbusters (kinda taking over everything in their path, hence the moving of them next time.  haha)  The peas are finished, though we may try another batch and see what we get.  The lemon cucumbers and pickling cucumbers are finally getting flowers, so perhaps with a bit more sun, we would actually get some.  We are restarting on the lettuce, as we picked (and let go to seed) the rest and need to start over.  Was very nice not to have to purchase lettuce from the store.  The beets need to be reseeded also and will be starting more onions and leeks.  Also, got some brussel sprouts to try and some cabbage, so that will be going in also.

The pad for Mom and Ray's house, excuse me, cottage is done.

Rob has been working on cutting a path around our property line so we (this would be the royal WE, as I am sure that Rob will be doing most of the work lol) can put up a fence and then make separate pastures to rotate the animals in and out of, followed by the chickens.

This is up the right side (north) of the property line as you look at the house.

This is along the back end of the property from north to south.  Rob is now working his way down in the backhoe from the south back corner to the front south corner to finish up the path around the property lines.

The Midget White turkeys are growing and getting more feathers.  Not sure yet on the sexes, but I am sure we have at least two toms.

Momma Narragansett turkey is sitting on 9 eggs.  She was on 14 eggs on the left side of this fence, but she moved because the goats kept bothering her, and only moved 10 of the eggs.  The rest are on the left side of the fence.  Should be about the beginning of September if she gets any to hatch.  I hope some of them hatch, but not sure if they are fertile, as I am not sure how often the tom has to do his business to make them all fertile and the tom is definitely not as good as Dumbledore at getting it on.  hahahahahaha

The chick in the middle of the picture above is the one rescued from the water bucket the other day.  She is doing fine and dandy.  All are growing well and getting bigger and more feathered.

I believe we will have two if not three roosters from this group.  The two in the back of this picture are roosters for sure.

Off to mow what is left of the lawn.  Later!

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Tuesday happenings.

So yesterday we had a scare.  Rob noticed there were only six chicks, not seven.  He and mom looked all over, hearing her, but not sure where she was.  Ray mentioned that he saw one sitting on  the edge of the goat's water bucket earlier and yep, when Rob looked, there she was, floating.  He fished her out, brought her in the house and I held her with a towel while mom used the hair drier to blow her dry with the diffuser on.  She fluffed right back up, but took a little longer to be able to stand on her own, probably the whole process took about 30 minutes.  She was really cold, but pecked at some bread crumbs and when we put her back out with Momma and the rest of the chicks, she ate some scratch and then promptly fell asleep in the food, as I am sure she had a stressful afternoon.  Not sure how long she was in the water bucket for.

So this morning, she looks pretty good so far, perky and bright eyed and pecking just like the others.

Hopefully she won't catch pneumonia and all will be good.

Rob got his "Big Boy Toy" yesterday and started on marking out the property lines up to the hookup for the electrical, and redid the driveway turnaround to accommodate where Mom and Ray's cottage is going to go, and today is going to work on cutting out the pad for their house.

This would be Raymond supervising the whole thing.  haha

Big hole, front yard, where the cottage will be.

Rob in his Big Boy Toy!

The sod that got pulled up.

The cottage "hole" from another angle, looking southeast.

Rob and Raymond having a serious discussion.  lol

A big dirt pile.  Liam built a bike hill of course!

More to come tomorrow!

Monday, August 1, 2011

Favorite Things

So I have a new favorite book -

I have made hamburger buns, pictured below, and two loaves of bread, also pictured below.  They were all very yummy and great directions to follow!

Also, found an absolutely perfect, yummy, yum, yum, and I mean really really good, makes you salivate and can't wait for it to be done recipe for pork spareribs, which we had last night.  Found the recipe at  So, sorry, but I didn't think to take a picture until only the bones were left.  hahahahahaha  We ate all 6 pounds of ribs between 6 people.  All I can say is WOW, make this recipe!!!

Rob informed us last night that he was going to cut wood.  About an hour later, I realized that he wasn't out at the woodshed, and thought that's weird, because he said he was going to cut wood.  So I started outside to look for him, and saw him and Liam coming back from the garage pushing this.

Isn't it fabulous?!  It is a soil sifter that he made.  So obviously, he was cutting wood, only not firewood like I thought.  haha.  The top square is on wheels that roll forward and back to shake the dirt out.  Rob mentioned this morning that he was thinking of adding something like metal pieces angled down into the wheelbarrow so the dirt does not get onto where the wheels are rolling, so will keep you updated on that.    Mom tried it out last night and Rob and it works like a charm.  YEAH!!  We can sift all the rocks out of the garden beds, yeah, easier to plant and mix in the compost.

Kara and I went to Hannah's baby shower on Saturday and met Aylia there.  They decided that they needed to compare their muscles.  Whatcha think?

I am very impressed!  We had a great time visiting with family and Amy made the best stuffed mushrooms, the recipe of which she shared with Aylia and me.  Will definitely be making these sometime soon.

Also, Joann and Roger were up camping on Camano this last weekend and Liam and Rob went crabbing with Roger.  They had a great time and Kara and I joined them at their campfire that night.  The cute dog is Joann's new addition, Carmen.

Liam of course had to jump into the photo and make his weird face.  hahahaha.  He's such a ham.

Harvested the last of the shelling peas last night and tore up the plants, which Gus, baby red, and Marty loved to munch on.  We will be replanting, after using the soil sifter first to add new soil/compost to the raised bed of course.

The sun is out and I'm off to enjoy it!  Later.