Monday, May 30, 2011

Problem Solved!

We have been talking about the flooring for the house/barn since day one of planning the living area. While searching Craigslist, we came upon an ad for pine flooring from a 1920's barn. It is 7" and 9" widths & perfect! There is enough to do the whole house. We wanted a floor with "character". One that wasn't too shiny or new. One that I could just sweep up & it would look fine. The wood came out of an old Iowa barn hay loft. The man that was selling it is in the business of taking down old barns. His business is Iowa Barn Savers out of Guttenberg. So we brought it home.
Good thing we had the extended van with us this weekend. It was quite a load (especially to unload at home with just Steve & I). So the next step is washing all the boards one by one & letting them dry outside. Then we will stack them in the workshop area until it is time to install. I am thinking maybe this fall or winter. We have so many projects to do outside until then. Once we get the floor down, we'll sand it, then put on the finish. I am so excited about this! I can picture it all done (and I wish it was :-).
The chicks are doing great. They are growing so fast! Bubbles (the rooster) and Cassie (the smallest chick) have both flown up & perched on the side of the brooder. I couldn't believe Cassie did it. She is the youngest. I think I will have to start using a screen on the top at night. I did that the first couple nights but then stopped. Steve started building the coop today.

He is standing on the bottom & the front wall frame is laying on top of that.
It will have two windows and a chicken door in the front that they can walk out into a screened area.  As we get more done, I will explain more of the plan. The chicks will be very happy in their new home.
Since it finally decided to warm up (almost 90) we decided to let them outside in the shade today in old dog cages that our son Shane gave us.
One larger cage with four chicks & the rooster & the smaller with two chicks.
They seemed to like it out there in the grass. Steve was close by & I was in the garden. On the way into the barn I realized that Cassie had squeezed her way out of the bigger cage. So I put her in the smaller one & she escaped from that one too. Not only that, the other chicks decided to follow her lead & do the same! Our neighbor's dog Brutus was sitting nearby but he didn't even care. So we grabbed them all up & put them back inside in the brooder. Guess outdoor time will have to wait until they are a little bigger. :-) Bubbles the rooster will still get his time outside, though.
Our neighbor's Scottish Highlander cow had a calf last week. I got to see it at a couple days old. So cute!
Mom keeping an eye on her baby.
We now know it's a boy.  Eli & Lizzie's cow had her calf last night. Another boy. They are glad she finally had it because they have been buying three gallons of milk day for quite a while from another Amish family. I don't agree with taking the calf away from the mother right away like they do, but they do a lot of things I don't agree with :-). We have been having an issue with their horses not having any water lately. I just don't understand. I am going to have a talk with them again about it though. The horses are in our pasture and the water trough they have in there has a leak. It has had this leak all spring. The horses go the whole day without water. Last night they woke us up kicking in the trough. I don't blame them. My neighbor who teaches natural horse training has talked to them about it too. I'll let you know the outcome of the situation...
It is 8 pm and still 83 degrees. I am not complaining though. It has been a cool spring here in the Midwest. An hour ago I went out and picked more Stinging Nettles for tea. I just can't get enough of it. I believe that a craving like that means your body is lacking what it provides (unlike chocolate cravings :-). Nettles are rich in iron, calcium, and tons of other vitamins and minerals. Most important to me is it is a detoxifier for radiation (really, do you think that just because Japan's problems disappeared from the main stream news, that it just went away?) Also can be used for treating for UTIs, and balancing  women's hormones. Nettle is also recommended to anyone with allergies or hay fever. This year allergies seem to be more severe, so drink your tea :-)
"How do I make it?" you say . Well, I'm going to be lazy & link you with a fellow blogger named Rachel who lives here in town. You might of heard of Lusa Organics? I bought some products for Jaelyn. They are wonderful. Check out her blog Clean. She does a great job of explaining how to find, harvest & consume nettles and always has inspiring posts.
I have also been making yogurt cheese lately. I react to dairy in that yucky way with mucous the day after I eat it .(In other posts, I have explained how I kicked my asthma by changing my diet.) Yogurt doesn't seem bother me though. Also making Kefir with raw milk didn't bother me but whole milk definitely did. So my handy dandy yogurt cheese maker has been getting a workout lately.
It is really simple. Buy or make your yogurt. I like the kind I get at the coop from Seven Stars Farm. I also prefer plain so I can add my own herbs or spices.
Simple. Just a container, lid & screen.
Spoon in the yogurt. Put the lid on & put in the fridge.
This is whey. This is what drains out of the yogurt. It is a great protein source that I use in making smoothies.
 So I just realized I don't have a picture of the finished yogurt cheese. It  looks like yogurt, only a thicker consistancy. What flavorings do you like in a dip that you might usually make from cream cheese? Really, anything goes. A simple recipe is to add salsa or maybe your favorite salad dressing or favorite herbs. Make some Cheesy Chips to go with it and you have a healthy snack or appetizer.
Well, I am tired from gardening in the heat today. I have a full day tomorrow of planting, too. We also are expecting the guy to come & install a roof cap on the barn. It didn't have a great one to begin with & the storm last year seems to have bent it too. We have minor leaking in the attic but will take care of that this week (I hope).
I hope everyone had a great Memorial Day weekend!


fullfreezer said...

I hope the weather cooperates with your coop build better than it has with ours. It seems like time and weather have been having difficulty coordinating themselves.
What a great deal on the flooring. I can't wait to see it installed.

Barb and Steve said...

Me too Judy! That storm was terrible that you had. I think you've have had enough rain for a while too. Hope you get your chicks in their home soon.

angie said...

Great find on the flooring! Looking forward to seeing the finished coop.