Friday, December 24, 2010
Thursday, December 23, 2010
Wednesday, December 22, 2010
Yes I know Yule was yesterday, but as I did not post anything yesterday I figured I'd comment about it now. We had a quiet Yule with my kids behaving (now -THATS- a Yule gift) granted one incident between brother and sister was probably inevitable.. so I don't count that against them. Not on a holiday anywho, one fight.. I considered myself lucky! I figured with the people out there having a fire on Yule I'd offer some safety tips for you to follow if you are so inclined.
Yule Safety Tips:
#1 The sawdust filled boxes of red paper cylinders in cousin Darrel's basement are not a good fire starter.. nor do they make good fire wood.
#2 Recycling and handmade robes are wonderful... however using leftover tissue paper from gift wrapping does not make good robes especially if it's going to be anything near raining or you are lighting the yule fire.
#3 When doing a bonfire for yule please make sure your bucket of emergency water is water and not gasoline... water puts it out and gas makes it bigger.
#4 Skyclad is fun but even with a bonfire at -3 degree air temperature skyclad is probably not a good idea, however if wearing the tissue paper robes you probably will be just as cold
#5 Those having a ritual on this wondrous day please remember to have the cakes and ale after lighting the fire, we wouldn't want someone to accidentally light the tissue paper robes on fire.
#6 don't forget your pets! Little Honeyraninbow chasing your familiar around with a burning branch is probably not a good idea, and if it's a cat she'll let you know later what she thinks.
#7 If you decide to draw down the moon on this day remember the moving lights in the sky are not the moon.
I do know I am probably missing a few here and I do hope everyone takes these in good humor :D as they are meant to be. Watch for my Christmas tips coming soon! :D
BE Well and Blessed Be...
Monday, December 20, 2010
Honey, I'm Homemade: Sweet Treats from the Beehive across the Centuries and around the World edited by May Berenbaum
I found it listed in many online book sellers, for under $25 so once I get the spare cash I am buying a copy of it. Those of you out there looking for alternatives might want to look into it. Also, to some of my readers who have seen these recipes "elsewhere" yes I know you've seen them; but I want everyone to see them. Again I found them in some old Organic Gardening and Farming and yes it is listed as "farming" Organic Gardening use to include "farming" in it... I do not know why they dropped the "Farming" line but they did. Also, I'd like to point out I have found in a grocery store "raw" honey; granted how "raw" it is I do not know. I would like to say it has a better flavor over the standard honey does. I almost can't wait to try real "raw" honey, does anyone know if you honestly cannot give raw honey to children? If so how old do they need to be? My youngest loves drinking tea and wants to try the "raw" honey we bought but I am not sure about letting her.
On another note, If you listen to podcasts please listen to my friend's one... yes you might not agree with her religious beliefs, I share the beliefs she has if you have not figured it out yet with my "goodbye" on here. http://www.thepaganhomesteader.podbean.com/ She has a lot of information in her podcasts and I think those of you who listen might find it interesting to hear.
Also... Hey our WATER is back on after over a week of being frozen, our neighbor had given us some heat tape, and well when Silver went to go put it on the pipe we discovered a small problem. The pipe.. both in fact (one going in and one going out) had been covered by almost 3 inches of ice, and we had to wait for that to melt first. Then the heat tape was able to heat the pipe, but still it took until yesterday to have it heat fully. The good news about it is though, it did not freeze until the temperature dropped to 4 degrees with a negative windchill. Silver also thinks that one of the kids had turned off the water by accident, we had been leaving it running just to make sure it didn't freeze; so we aren't quite sure why it froze as it did not until early morning. Not like 4 am but rather sometime after we got the kids up for school, so we aren't sure why.
Thats all for now and if you can pass us some honey recipes along please do!
Be Well and Blessed Be...
Tuesday, December 14, 2010
Monday, December 13, 2010
Wednesday, December 8, 2010
Sunday, December 5, 2010
This is our tree for this year, it's having issues but it is still pretty. A living Norfolk Pine that we will be planting in the yard this coming spring. We also picked up this tiny pitiful cypress tree that Lowes was selling for $1 due to the fact it was dropping a tad... it's not now and we are going to plant it next spring as well.
Well though we are putting in insulation my little girl had a three dog night the other day.. as of course the dogs did not want to sleep on the cold floor. Oh, does anyone have any suggestions for Paris' skin problem? The vet said it's a flea allergy.. but it takes a full winter for her coat to grow back, anyone know of a way to have it grow back faster?
This of course is our resident momma cat Paige, she was hanging off the upper bunk bed the other day and I though she looked so cute like that (and of course she knows she's cute) and also had a "wow your legs are long" moment too.
Tuesday, November 30, 2010
Tuesday, November 23, 2010
We did notice a ...small... problem when we started to place cut pieces between the studs. The top of the space and the bottom were different widths, it is a good thing Silver hadn't cut for every space before we started fitting them. Even with measuring the tops and bottoms for each cut there are still a few small gaps showing up, this is due to the amount the diffrence is between the two spots.
Due to the precise measuring we have to do.. and spending an hour trying to figure out where two of the dogs ran off to, we have only gotten 75% of the front ceiling done. We will be spending the day tomorrow finishing it, with the kids' help. We figured we'd tell the kids they are going to have to do some major weight lifting tomorrow (grins), you know how much an arm full of Styrofoam is.. its just so darn heavy!
Friday, November 19, 2010
Tuesday, November 16, 2010
Monday, November 15, 2010
Thursday, November 11, 2010
I have to admit while I believe in first amendment rights, I find that any company choosing to sell a book about pedophilia a heinous crime. "The Pedophile's Guide to Love and Pleasure: a Child-lover's Code of Conduct" by Philip R. Greaves II, is not something that Amazon should be offering to it's sellers. From all of the outpouring of outrage in the public Amazon has pulled it from their Kringle page.
While this in itself is a wonderful statement, people have bought it already and Amazon let it be put up for sale in the first place. Maybe Amazon needs to have someone watching for content that is illegal in nature, making something like this available to the public is just wrong.
Amazon is a private company, which means they had a choice in allowing it to be there. Many online sites such as FaceBook and Twitter have started groups against this book. There is thousands of entries online about it as well all running along the same lines of outrage. I don't think that if my children went on Amazon to make their holiday wish lists would I want them to even see this listed. Being a public site with anyone able to visit their site they do need to ensure that a child couldn't get into something they shouldn't, as now a days kids surf the webs in school. I guarantee that they are unsupervised doing so even at home. Yes the man who wrote this book has the right to write it... However that doesn't make it a good idea, nor appropriate.
I had posted my views on a site that I belong to online and most of the people (not all mind you) jumped me for saying Amazon shouldn't sell it because of 1st amendment rights, I also had a couple defend what I said about it being disgusting and that Amazon should remove it. It does show me that people do believe in freedom of speech... but that they don't care what that "speech" entails... as one of the people who responded to it said "A line has to be drawn somewhere"
Bright Blessing and Blessed Be...
Wednesday, November 10, 2010
How to wash your hair on the homestead (sans shower)
I have made a discovery since living out here and it's that you never appreciate things like showers until you have to do the following:
#1 find a wash basin of some kind that you can bend your head into.
#2 make sure you have enough water (again this might be hard if you have no well, if this is the case follow my suggestions for getting water on the last post)
#3 heat some water (again this might be hard, also you might want to watch the temps a bit closer than with dishes or clothes) I am sure you don't want the “OH MY GOD IT'S HOT” water.
#4 if you have long hair (anything past your shoulders) grab a partner as it is a team effort.
#5 pour your water into the basin
#6 pour COLD water into the basin as I'm sure it is too hot
#7 bend over the basin getting as much of your hair into the water as you can
#8 have your partner pour water over your head (watch the temps as hot for your scalp is different than hot for your hands)
#9 take hair out of water
#10 soap up hair (note you will be dripping water)
#11 put hair back in basin
#12 again have your partner pour water over your head
#13 Ring out water
Repeat for conditioner or dry
Tuesday, November 9, 2010
Without a well:
#1 Find a washing vessel, this can be anything that will hold more than 3 articles of clothing; with water of course.
#2 Make sure you have enough water to wash with (if so jump to step #4)
#3 go to your water provider via car (that is if you have the gas for it)
#4 fill a water heating vessel with half of your washing water, (what ever is the easiest)
#5 while waiting for water to boil place some clothes in the washing vessel, add soap if you are not using a bar soap. (note bleach on your hands hurt so if you want to do whites bleach them overnight in bleach water and wash them first)
#6 Once water is boiling hot add to your clothes in the washing vessel
#7 add cold water till you can touch the water (*note water will either be not quite hot enough or “OH MY GOD IT'S HOT” decide which way you want it to go)
#8 if using a bar of soap (which is the easiest) take one article of clothes and rub soap into a portion of it and then rub that part against the rest until soapy. If not using a bar agitate the water (note you may have to do some spot cleaning if there are some nasty stains)
#9 rinse off soap in washing water
#10 if necessary get extra water vessel to help rinse soap out and rinse again
#11 Wring out clothes (note clothes will be very wet even after you wring them out)
#12 hang clothes to dry depending on air temps and wind this can vary
With a well but before plumbing:
Follow step #1 then find/get/borrow a hose and hook up to your well and fill your water containers then continue at step #4.
With Well and plumbing but no washing machine:
Follow step #1 then fill from tap and continue at step #4
Washing dishes on the homestead:
follow above steps but change clothes for dishes
Bathing on the homestead:
follow above steps but change clothes for yourself
Monday, November 8, 2010
Thursday, November 4, 2010
This is one of two packages of pine bedding we bought for our sawdust toilet, I think it was a good buy. $4.99 for "compressed" 3 cubic ft, it says that uncompressed it is 8ft. So we bought two of them as we are not sure how much we will go through in one month, I'd rather have too much than a week before Silver gets money trying to stretch one cup of pine bedding. We bought some 2x3's as the lumber yard with the $1.19 2x4's were out of stock, figures... so we spent $1.99 on 2x3x8's instead of the 2x4's we got cheaper, no biggie. We just used the remaining 2x4's we had to make a supporting wall for the loft as we put my son up their to sleep so we can have our "indoor" toilet.
Here it is our new toilet! I know the picture is outta focus, I guess at least one of my pictures has to be. It was funny as that is the toilet seat we had on the out house .. so for a short period of time we had no toilet. the kids had returned home from school before Silver finished it and of course one of my girls couldn't hold it and Silver had to rush to finish it. For now we have a curtain around it till we can build a wall, this way "little ones" can use the toilet; because you know how they have a hard time with those little bladders... uh-huh a 12 yr old seems to have a smaller bladder than me. I guess when ya gotta go you gotta go.
Here is a picture of "Crookie" perched on the climbing log, its actually funny watching him climb up and down. As since his stroke his balance isn't good and he is a very large cat he stretches all the way he can down it before putting his back legs even on the log. Now I have suggested to Silver to put this log back up with the bunk bed but in front of them using it as part of the ladder to the top bunk. The other girl will have to duck to get to her bed but that should work. Silver said he has to think it over, maybe we will find a solution today while we are out. So today's jobs are going to be run the plumbing for the sink, build the bunk beds and wire the computer and kid side of the shed; next month we will be buying insulation... it will cost around $200 to insulate this shed and well... I don't have it now after paying our bills and getting the wood and other things we needed. I did go out and buy some milk and have it in our new little fridge, it's so nice to have a fridge.
Tuesday, November 2, 2010
This is the start of our work we did today to put in our kitchenette. This picture is of the supporting wall we needed to build for the upper cabinets, the whole thing combined is about 7ft 6in. After doing the wall Silver and I went over to our close neighbor to borrow their "haulin'" truck... it is an older beat up truck that does work... kinda. It took us 20-30 minutes to get the truck to start, it hasn't been moved in about 4 months and the transmission slips, well apparently it also had a totally dead battery too. Well we get the truck to the local gas station to put in some gas and discovered, yep the transmission slips as it needs fluid. OK put in gas added trans fluid, and it wouldn't start. We tried jumping it, nope; not the battery. Did find out there was a loose spark plug, and after about 10 minutes and jiggling the key we got it to turn over.
We also started our wiring the shed... which is up from running everything off of 4 plugs wired right into the meter. We actually have about 1/2 of the wiring done and also we have wired the kitchenette up, though to test the wire needed for it, as Silver was not sure what kind we'd need. We did discovered that the kitchenette originally needed the old plug in fused that when they blow you need new ones; it doesn't now. The good news? It works!~!!!!!!!!!!
And finally the kitchenette 85% done (need to plumb it still), and we are roasting chicken breasts and having fried potatoes with onions with it. I like having a inside kitchen!!!!!
Monday, November 1, 2010
Ok I think we did rather well on this shopping trip...:
Saturday, October 30, 2010
Tuesday, October 26, 2010
Monday, October 25, 2010
This is a picture of the interior, just wide enough for the tub to fit in, we have some logs holding it semi level and still.