Thursday, June 30, 2011
Wednesday, June 29, 2011
Tuesday, June 28, 2011
This stock has:
These are the noodles as I made them, ingredients:
It's very simple from there, mix all dry ingredients together, then make a "well" in the center and crack your eggs into it. Start mixing the eggs in, then slowly add water and maybe flour till you get the consistency your want. Which is about equal to biscuit dough.
Doesn't it look good? Oh, the carrots I used to make the stock went to my chickens, and they were very happy about it. I was going to add some cut up carrot at the end and forgot. You can always "finish" this soup differently than I have, as I work with what I've got.
Monday, June 27, 2011
But... don't take my word for it...
Saturday, June 25, 2011
This is the Wikipedia entry for this “animal”:
The Enviropig is the trademark for a genetically modified line of Yorkshire pigs with the capability to digest plant phosphorus more efficiently than ordinary unmodified pigs that was developed at theUniversity of Guelph. Enviropigs produce the enzyme phytase in the salivary glands that is secreted in the saliva. When cereal grains are consumed, the phytase mixes with feed in the pig's mouth, and once swallowed the phytase is active in the acidic environment of the stomach degrading indigestible phytic acid with the release of phosphate that is readily digested by the pig.
Cereal grains including corn, soybean and barley contain 50 to 75% of their phosphorus in the form of phytic acid. Since the Enviropigs can now digest phytic acid, there is no need to include either a mineral phosphate supplement or commercially produced phytase to balance the diet. Because no phosphorus is added to the diet and there is digestion of the phytic acid, the manure is substantially reduced in phosphorus content, ranging from a 20 to 60% decrease depending upon the stage of growth and the diet consumed.
The benefits of the enviropig if commercialized include reduced feed cost and reduced phosphorus pollution as compared to the raising of ordinary pigs.
The Enviropig was developed by the introduction of a transgene construct composed of the promoter segment of the murine parotid secretory protein gene and the E. coli phytase gene. This construct was introduced into a fertilized embryo by pronuclear microinjection, and this embryo along with other embryos was surgically implanted into the reproductive tract of an estrous synchronized sow. After a 114 day gestation period, the sow farrowed and piglets born were checked for the presence of the transgene and for phytase enzyme activity in the saliva. Through breeding, this line of pigs is in the 7th generation, and the phytase trait is stably transmitted in a Mendelian fashion.
Seems from what I have read that the idea behind this is the concern of contamination from the manure that is spread on farms from the large scale pig farming pigs. Well, in my opinion; that is the problem right there. Large scale pig farming, a sustainable pig farm would be better especially if it were a pastured pig farm.
That means the pigs forage for at least 75% of it's food, not get fed 100% of it's diet through commercial feed. We still do not know what any of the GM anything will do to us down the line, but I doubt it will be good for anyone.
Here is a good question what if these pigs escape into the wild and breed with feral pigs? Somehow I doubt that would be good, and it would spread those genes where they were not meant to go. Maybe even into the US.
Stand up and say something about this, and stop it before it becomes a reality in Canada and here.
I have read your magazine for years learning as much as I can about the Homesteading way of life and anything having to do with “off grid” living. I now live on a 5+ acres homestead in Missouri. While I am not an “Urban Homesteader” I do believe in what they do and offer my own help through what I learn in my process of making my home a “viable” home for my family.
It has come to my attention that you are succumbing to the “machine” by changing your use of the term “urban homesteading” to “Modern Homesteading” because of the Dervases institute. I have to say I am greatly disappointed in this move on your part.
That family did not create the movement, nor had I even heard of them till you did one article on their family and at that time I though “wow that's cool”. I have not heard a thing about them anywhere since then. At least not until they pull the lawsuit against the people who use the term “Urban Homestead”. A term that has been used in the movement well before Jules and company claim to have started it.
Almost 8,000 people on facebook alone are protesting this and are outraged by this happening. I am no different, this term cannot be “owned” as it is general use. Your magazine has in the past been a beacon to many people trying to live with limited intervention from the “machine” that is modern society. You have also helped those who cannot leave their city lives and chose to live within the “machine” to do what they can.
It saddens me to see that your magazine no longer truly supports this. Also due to the fact that you are putting this one family who happened to just be “lucky” enough to make it better than most in their endeavors above others who have been doing it for years I cannot in good conscious buy/read your magazine.
I hope that eventually you change your stance and I'm sure if you do I will hear of it, through the web of the true “Urban Homesteaders”.
Please support us in this attempt to make MEN see that we don't care for this bow to the D-family.
Friday, June 24, 2011
Thursday, June 23, 2011
Yep “foraging” , as foraging is one of the good things about living in a country/woods setting you can gather a lot more food than you can just by growing. Today was a blackberry day. As you can see my harvest was not big as it is still early in the season.
We have a great many blackberry canes along the road here, so many and so big that they over hang it in spots. The canes are so swollen with unripened fruits right now they are bending quite a bit I'll try to get a picture of in in a day or so.
We should have a great many more berries in about a week based on the coloring of the remaining berries now. Oh, that smaller bowl is of blueberries that grow wild next to my property. The blueberries seem to be spreading as well so next year we should have a good crop from those along with my lone one in my berry patch. I do hope to add to my berry patch next year.
For now any berries that I forage are being put into a baggie and being frozen (don't yell at the moment the baggie takes less room in my freezer than the jars and the jars keep getting broken by kids). I am freezing as I am hoping in a month or two, to be able to make my first jam/jelly. I am planning it to be a mixed berry jam possibly with rosehips in it for vitamin C.
I need to look up some recipes on jams/jellies online and look through the few I have stored on here and see if I have one I can modify for my use. Lowes right now has a anniversary edition water canner that I'd like to buy this month if we can afford it. Then I'll get some jelly sized jars and anything else I need and make my first attempt!
I am so excited by the thought, and I hope it “jells” correctly as I'll be doing this completely from a newbie standpoint. Any helpful hints would be appreciated!
Now take some time and find out if you have something “wild” near you to forage. Most areas that have any hint of wild berries sometimes will have “berrrying days” where someone will guide you to go to the best “patches”. Though I am sure they don't show you the town's favorite spot, why give out a good secret?
I have noticed the mandrakes (or Mayapple if you prefer) are not doing well this year I have only seen one with a growing fruit. So I am guessing I am not trying that jam out this year. I hope to next year though.
Be Well and Blessed Be...
Ok, I took this a few days ago; but still this is what it looked like before we worked on it this morning.
I put the shovels into the "hole" to give you some perspective on what it looks like now. Even though the one is "tipped up" a bit the soil under the handle has been loosened. We had to stop for a bit now due to my back and Silver's back. As of now it is about 9 1/2X 6 1/2X 1 1/2.. a bit closer to 2 ft on the depth.
Tuesday, June 21, 2011
Monday, June 20, 2011
These are the ones in the back garden, 2 sets of these have very thick stems so I am wondering if they will need staking at all.
This flower is on one of the ones in my back garden. i do also have flowers on one set of my tomatoes in my box, I think those in the box might be the purple smudge ones. I'm not sure yet but we will see.
This one compared to the others in my back garden seem on the puny size. The stems on these are not as thick, and while this plant is very lush the other ones in the back seem to have more leaves and bigger ones.
This is one of my "boxed" tomatoes, doesn't he look happy? today we set up a trellising fence on the back for me to tie them all too and we will see how they do with it. also i will take a picture of it tomorrow morning.
Here is my "puny" one in the box, now it is a lush plant and if it weren't for the fact it won't stay erect it would be the same height as the other ones. I have a feeling this is a "vining" type of tomato.
This is really an "overview" shot, but as you can see it is mostly my "bush" beans the tiger's eye's. Which in my opinion are very tall bush beans. I do hope they produce well.
Here are my pole beans, and they seem very happy they are climbing on their own now after quite a bit of encouragement on my part. i did not get a picture of my rice beans but they seem to be more a bush type than a pole and they are flowering already.
Now for those of you who don't know what this is, it is Bitter Melon. I am growing it for Silver's Diabetes, as it is suppose to regulate blood sugar levels. it is the oddest looking thing I have ever seen. It took forever to germinate and out of 6 seeds only one did germinate. the leaves are maple leaf shaped which to me is odd looking on it's own. it is also slightly lighter in color than a cucumber leaf.
This here is a newbie plant in my garden it is a Black Mission Fig, it already has some figs growing on them. I am hoping to see this one take off a bit in the next few months, I am also expecting it will take over the spot I planted it in. It has been years since i have eaten a fresh fig as I have a couple times when i was younger as a neighbor behind us when I was growing up had one growing in her yard. I don't know what kind she had, but she didn't even eat the figs, but she grew the plant. I think in the case of most "fruiting" types of trees most people buy and plant them with no intention of eating from them later. They want the "pretty" flowers but not the fruit later. I on the other hand want the fruit. So right now in my "budding" (yep I said it!) orchard I have 2 Elderberries, and one Fig. I hope to add more to it soon, I really want to get one of those "cold hardy" banana trees I've seen advertised recently. I also know they will not taste like a "banana" I know, but if they will survive our winters it would be a big help as we eat bananas like you would not believe.
Sunday, June 19, 2011
I watched a really cool and wonderful movie with my kids last night, it was called “What's on Your Plate?” It is directed my an activist named Catherine Grund and has her daughter Sadie Hope-Grund and her daughters best friend Safiyah Kai Riddle as the hosts/stars of it.
In this movie the girls after experiencing the taste of a “farm fresh” tomato and how different it tasted decided to figure out all they could about where their food comes from. Including the food in their school.
My girls at least were very interested in what was going on in this movie and about how these 2 girls where showing how much the children of NY city had access too. ...provided you look for the “good food”.
These girls visited 2 major farms in NY state that had dealings with the NY city school system. One was an apple farm seems it took quite a bit to get NY apples into the NY city school system. The other farm was a carrot farm (I'm sure they had more than carrots), the carrot farm was trying to get their carrots into the school system. By the end of the movie you find out that the carrots did make it into the school system.
They also learned about CSA's and about families in the city who farm. Also a friend of one of the girls lives in Harlem and drives out of that area to buy good food. Then the girls found for them a farmers market in their area, just down the street from them. It had been there for 12 years and the father of the family didn't even know it was there.
I think this was truly a wonderful family film that everyone should watch with their kids, especially if their kids “don't get” what mom and dad are telling them about food and how important it is to eat good foods. I know my kids (the girls anyway) asked quite a few questions during and after the movie about food and where it comes from.
It's funny, though as we have been telling my kids all about good food verses “bad” food and they didn't quite listen to it. Well, at least they are paying attention now.
So go check this movie out again it's called :”What's on Your Plate?”
Saturday, June 18, 2011
I have come across a strange/startling discovery lately while we are driving around. It has to do with our local corn (feed corn) crop. Now last year I had seen some areas in fields that were not as well grown as they others. No big deal right?
Well this year, while driving past at least 3 different corn fields (feed corn). I have seen some puny plants, also large portions of the field just aren't growing at all. I know and you also may know that old line about how corn should be” knee high by the 4th of July.” At this moment I do not think that thses corn fields will manage that height at all.
Which made me think about something else, people here have heard me talk about what I think of GMO crops. Also my concerns about what they -might- do. Well what if we are already seeing some kind of affect on our crops now from it? Maybe something is going on in their genetics that is making them harder to grow? What if we are heading to a corn blight? What if...?
There is just to many questions about these crops (in my opinion anyway), also to many “what if's'” to really want to have anything to do with those crops. I don't think I will ever grow corn as I worry even with sweet corn that I would have some crossing with a GM product.
My other concern about at least the GM corn, but the others as well. When you have a crop with that “terminator” gene, where does the company get the new seed every year? The whole point on having that gene is to prevent them from producing viable seed. So where are they growing the corn that they use that gene in and how is it that the “seed corn” is/has the “terminator” gene in it?
Am I the only person asking this question?
Friday, June 17, 2011
Wednesday, June 15, 2011
The farmer walked out to his field shaking his head, looking at the corn crops all dead; and not knowing why. This has been the first time this has ever happened as far as the farmer knew. He had been growing corn for about five years after his father stopped and gave him the farm. As he looked around even across the street he could see those corn fields dead as well, and those weren't his fields.
As far as he knows all the corn fields are dead, the only place he had heard of any growing still was on a tiny farm about five miles away. He knew though that he couldn't grow that corn, it would kill him. About a year ago someone had gotten into the county grain silo some of that corn, and it had mixed into the rest of the good corn. It was a disaster, all the livestock fed that corn died and so did the people whose food was tainted by it.
The farmer shakes his head thinking about what else that farm was growing. What was a tomato anyway? He had never heard of such a thing as a tomato, and what were beans? The only food that existed (at least as he grew up knowing) was corn made or processed meat. Everyone who grew food grew either corn, chickens, or cows. So what weird kind of food were those people growing?
He could not believe it, as he was offered food from those people the one time he went over to there. He was sick for a week after and the doctors gave him five bottles of pills to get rid of what ever was in that food. He was told by the doctor later that whatever that farm grew it did not have the one thing that all life. It was a a non-modified food, the farmer had never heard of such a thing before. His father when he had asked him told him that when he was a kid they had such foods. Also that people had only started eating the modified foods.
So he guessed someone must have hid those seeds when they were destroying all the non-modified seeds. It didn't matter now if there were as now people could only eat the modified crops now, same with the live stock. The farmer shakes his head again, his dad's childhood days were over 50 years ago, it must have been an odd time.
While yes, this is not going on now; we do not know the future affects of GM products. What if... one of the future side affects is that anything fed with them can then only eat them? What will happen if humanity becomes dependent on those alterations in the food to survive? It would change our genetic code, and then people who stayed away from them would be a different species from the “normal” humans. While this might not happen, we just don't know. We need more study of these products before humans should ingest them in any form. Even 2nd hand form.
I do truly wonder about it...
Be Well, and Blessed Be...
Sunday, June 12, 2011
Thursday, June 9, 2011
Wednesday, June 8, 2011
Monday, June 6, 2011
This is one of the three raspberry plants I got for my birthday, now I have not been watering these. I am thinking of starting too, but they seem to be doing well. Oh the picture of the blueberry you can't see the actual plant so I won't be posting that one. The lavender is in bloom, and the "red hot poker" lilies are coming up; I hope they flower this year. Oh, my bleeding hearts are looking lush, one of the Dahlias is looking well as well.
Now to be honest I did not think these would do so well, however they seem to be growing fine. Though a couple days ago I did discover that one of them is broken in the middle, so I am down to one plant. I hope we can get a few more.
Thursday, June 2, 2011
2 sad looking Stevia plants that were $1.36 a piece, that was a good find as it is the end of the 'buy plants' season here. Does anyone out there know and can tell me if they are a perennial or an annual? ...and... would it be better to have them in a pot or in the ground? I am hoping that they will do well as after my first taste I do have to say YEP! They are sweet! The 'growingyourowngreens' guy on youtube commented that it has an odd taste to it as well. Well, I wouldn't call it odd; I think it's just a little different. However I can see myself drying this and powdering it to use in tea, or Silver's coffee.
As you can see it is much wider than it was in my last picture of it. The shovel is in the same place that it was before, my arms have been feeling so heavy after about 10 wheel barrow's full of dirt that I dig out. That I think I might wind up with some impressive muscles by the time we finish. My youngest daughter in her infinite wisdom thought that just pushing the barrow was hard. OK, so I let her try the digging out, she could not even fill it up once. She stopped complaining about how hard it was after that. Funny thing is the first day she had no issues doing the work, it was the second day that she had the issues.