Friday, December 7, 2012

Country Living

Country Living



Since we moved to the country, we’ve noticed one important change in our lives: it has significantly more poo. There’s the cat, of course, and now the chicks with their sticky butts. And now our new puppy, Ender. After taking him to the vet our theories were confirmed, he was born with Roundworms from his mother. We’ve been treating him since then and he has gained substantial energy and weight, though his poo is still mostly liquid.


Ender, the Xenocider. Beware: He will annihilate your species.
When he gets older, that is. 
          And in terms of getting stronger, when we got Ender he could barely hop up a normal sized stair. Now he can manage the taller stairs leading to our three-season room, and we have to take him out running to wear him out. We’ve been crate training him as well, and his crying at night is getting better, he only cried for a little bit around 10:30 last night, and a little more around 4:00-5:00 this morning. Potty training is still a work in progress however. I think he peed in the house only 3 or 4 times yesterday…typically when we’re eating or making dinner and can’t watch him close enough. He’s adorable, especially when he’s sleeping and falls off the couch, and he’s sure to protect the farm from strays and deer, of which there are many. So far we’ve seen half a dozen cats prowling the property, a stray dog nosing in the compost, and near two dozen deer. I think our farm may have become a haven for them. We’ve got lush perennial pasture for them to graze, thanks to the previous owners and the Amish/Mennonites who seeded it, and we don’t shoot at them, yet. They laugh at our puny fence of course, but its intention was more to keep our livestock in than to keep them out. 




         We’ve been without cable and internet for a little over a month now, though we should be getting internet mid-December! We don’t miss cable much, except for the Bronco games. When we have the time we listen to NPR, research for the farm, read from our extensive library, or play video games. I finally beat Assassin’s Creed II Brotherhood, now onto Revelations! I think what we miss the most from Colorado is Chipotle and Sprouts (mostly for their goat butter, yum). But we’re learning to cope. We’ve learned to make damn good Chipotle-style burritos, and we noticed a neighbor down the road has goats, I’m hoping we can buy some butter or milk and make some for ourselves.

          



           

 We try not to go to town too much, being pretty far away, and when we do it is usually for errands and shopping, and always stopping by the library to use the internet (we miss it so!) We’ve been limiting ourselves to eating out once a week, and have been trying different restaurants nearly every time. We’ve found a few promising ones that we enjoy eating at and would love to sell to, such as Dexter Street Smokehouse, which offers local meat and has great hamburgers.

         
Homemade deep-dish bacon pepperoni and onion pizza, with
a whole wheat, basil and garlic crust.
         In all honesty we have missed eating out very little because we make everything ourselves, and we eat well. Here’s a sample of our meals this week: Homemade sourdough bread, eggs and toast most mornings, Chipotle-style shredded beef burritos, garlic Parmesan chicken wings, winter salads with carrots, radishes, broccoli and cucumber, turkey vegetable soup, zucchini and bacon spaghetti carbonara, homemade bacon and onion pizza, and broccoli chicken stir fry. We eat pretty good.

          


My second try with Sourdough bread, from Mark Bittman's
 How to Cook Everything, one of the few recipes I've found
 that doesn't call for Buttermilk. Very simple and easy.
         We haven’t met many of our neighbors yet, but it’s winter and most people are trying to stay snug and warm in their homes. We don’t really go to church or any local school games, so I’m not too surprised we haven’t met many of our neighbors. We see the Amish/Mennonites driving their buggies by the house nearly every day, mostly around dawn and dusk, and we look forward to meeting them, and maybe asking them to seed more pasture for us when we’ve cleared the fields of trees. Once spring arrives and we’re out in the fields full-time, we hope to meet our neighbors when they drive by and stop to ask us why in the world are we hand-weeding.

Until next week, Farmer Figgins. 

Oh, does anyone have a good whole wheat bread recipe they'd recommend/share? All of mine turn out far too dense! Any advice/recipes are welcome!

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