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Sunday, December 18, 2011

I love winter and lazy days

Ya know, I might just be able to get used to this cold weather after all. It is nice to have all the garden and farm chores done for the season. Nice to spend weekends just lounging around doing nothing.  The only animals left to care for are the dogs, cats and laying hens and their 1 rooster. In winter Luna is allowed to sleep on the porch if she chooses because she will not under any circumstances get into an enclosed dog house. Although she comes in wet and the front porch looks pretty bad when its wet out. But ya know, shes my dog and its my porch. And I am not one to try to impress anyone. Even the cats will come up from who knows where and sleep on a couple of the chairs on the porch. And yep thas OK too. After all they do keep the mice and lil critters at bay and they are fed here so I think they earn their keep. The chickens get to run out in the afternoons after it warms up outside and they make their share of messes in the yard. They always run up to the porch when I go outside expecting to get treats. Its OK if they make some messes, they provide us with lots of eggs so they too earn their keep. So this time of year with no worries of mowing the yard and keeping the yard tidy the critters get  free run. Now in spring it will be my turn to fill in holes they make and straighten up what damage if any they do in the yard.
I had raised lots of parsley in my herb bed this summer and dried a good bit and froze some. I thought the heavy frost we have had would have killed the last of it. But it is still green and pretty and still growing. I cut a bit bowl full today and brought it in, washed and chopped it up and froze it for garish and flavor in lots of things we cook. Jason had brought his truck around here today to have Rodger help him find the leak in his brakes and they worked on it for a few hours. In the end they finally had to take it to the garage where we get tires so they can put all new brake line on it. It was getting up toward afternoon so I decided to fix a late breakfast. We had homemade biscuits, homemade sausage, homemade deer ham, homegrown eggs and gravy for breakfast/lunch/supper. Rodger likes the deer ham. This is the first time we have made it. When they harvested deer I put the same salt/sugar cure on the deer hind quarters that I use on country pork hams. It really tastes a lot like pork country ham except it is leaner.
Our country hams and bacon are curing out nicely in the meat house. Maybe during the Christmas holiday while the guys are off work we can slice one of the sides of bacon. My favorite is the jowl bacon. It just has more flavor than side bacon. We really don't want to cut up to much of the cured meat right now. If ya cut into it ya have to freeze it and we don't have freezer room right now. We have half a beef that will be here in early February that will more than refill the freezers. I think I may end up canning a bit of the beef too. I know I will make so good rich nourishing stock with the beef bones. It will be nice knowing the meat is from an animal that has been well cared for and is healthy. The more I think about it, I think we eat pretty much organic here. All are veggies are home raised. We if ya exclude a few times they had to be sprayed to save the crop. Our chickens are all raised without steroids. Are hogs were raised without steroids and such. The hens get corn and forage for most of their food. The feed they do get has no antibiotics or steroids in it. Oh well, for us its just a way of life.
Not much else happening here, so till next time, blessings from the McGuire homestead.


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