Slowly…

 
Sorry not much from us lately.  We’ve been busy around here getting going again for the school year and doing a bunch of fall cleaning before the real cold weather hits.  We have some exciting news to share that will have to wait for now until I have more time.
 
Garrett with a funny potato...
Garrett with a funny potato…

This weekend we harvested half of our potatoes and all of the onions .  They are now safely tucked away for the long upcoming winter.  The weather has been a bit strange here and not at all very fall-like, we have been having very nice warm weather (80’s to 90’s)  with a few cooler days thrown in once in a while and no frost.  That was until this morning when we awoke to a thick coat of frost.   I need to get out and see what is salvageable from the green tomatoes and get them inside and eventually we will have to put  the garden to bed  and start the dreaming/scheming process over again for next spring.  The weather looks very promising for the next week though. 

 Still have a bit of canning to do, we have been saving strawberries for the whole month of September so we want to make some strawberry rhubarb jam.  We also need to make some pumpkin butter and apple butter and I hope to can some black and kidney beans.   We sent the last pig to be processed last week and we should be able to pick it up sometime soon!  Then when the weather gets a bit cooler we have a couple of  sheep that will be headed  to freezer camp and some turkeys that will follow.  Then of course we have hunting right around the corner which  is all Sawyer can even think of!   Lots of stuff to keep us busy.

 

Saturday night I combed Teigen’s hair straight up and he thought it was so funny and wanted me to take a picture of it…

Teigen after a tub...

Teigen after a tub...

 

 

Hope everyone’s enjoying this last day of summer!

Processing Day…

Yesterday we processed 20 of the 42 Cornish x chickens.  We ended up moving them over to my dad’s house about a month ago as he had more room to finish them in.  After 8 weeks of growing, our smallest bird yesterday was about 4 lbs and the largest was 8 1/2 lbs!   My dad kept asking Sawyer if he accidentally grabbed one of the laying hens!  Most of the birds where between 6 1/2 to 7  lbs…not too bad!

One big chicken!

One big chicken!

 

My dad and Sawyer started early yesterday morning getting all prepped up and getting the fire started to boil the water which was used for scalding the chickens.

The scalder- a metal garbage can set up on two block with a fire going underneath...

The scalder- a metal garbage can set up on two block with a fire going underneath...

 

We (the little boys, girls and myself) did not show up until later in the afternoon to do the wrapping but we didn’t miss all the fun!  Sawyer had the fun job of knocking heads off and helped in gutting them and dad scalded and plucked…

Here's dad after the beheading, gutting and scalding-getting ready to be plucked...

Here's dad after the beheading, gutting and scalding-getting ready to be plucked...

 

The plucker doing a fine job removing the feathers...

The plucker doing a fine job removing the feathers...

Dad said his rubber pants were a bit hot to wear all day yesterday!

Sawyer with the gizzards and hearts a real delicacy...

Sawyer with the gizzards and hearts a real delicacy...

 I’d say yum, but I really don’t think it’s all that yummy… at all.   However Sawyer  disagrees with me and enjoys the little tidbits!   8{  

Tori pulling another one out of the cooler...

Tori pulling another one out of the cooler...

A *new* rubber garbage can  was used as a cooler.  We ended up using milk jugs that had been filled with water and frozen to put in the *cooler*  to keep everything cold.

Tori did the finish work and picked out any remaining feathers...

Tori did the finish work and picked out any remaining feathers...

 

Boomer, my dads dog guarded the final product!

Boomer, my dads' dog, guarded the final product!

 

Chicken 2009, nice white packages...

Chicken 2009, nice white packages...

The little boys helped run the final packages down the stairs to the freezer.  Today the process begins again on the remaining chickens.  It’s so nice to have a freezer full of home grown chickens to feed us through the coming year!

Last night I also participated in a home canning class at the community college.  Last Thursday was the first class in which we learned how to water bath canning and we processed some nectarines.  Last night we learned how to use a pressure canner and processed some tomatoes.  The classes were so much fun and I feel more confident in using my pressure canner and can hardly wait to get started on processing more fruits and veggies!

Put up and ready to use later...

Put up and ready to use later...

 

And… we got our first duck egg this morning…

Our first duck egg out of our Indian Runner's...

Our first duck egg out of our Indian Runner's...

 

Hope you all have a wonderful weekend.  We are headed out to pick up a new ram lamb for our flock!

 

Erin