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Thursday, November 10, 2016

Open Season

Opening day of rifle season means a lot of different things depending on who you talk to.  For the avid hunter, they've prepped through summer & fall with establishing food plots, building the perfect deer stand in the most ideal spot in the woods, brush hogging the fields for good visibility and sighting in the most prize possession, the rifle.  For the widow wives, it's a free ticket for a girls shopping weekend.  As for us, it's usually the last hurrah for the year at the farm.  It's hard to believe that it's even that time of year considering the kids took a plunge in the pond a few weeks back.  

So the prepping and packing began with the questions flooding in.  Who's coming up?  How long ya staying?  What projects are we working on?  What's for supper?  I know two things for sure....we will never starve at the farm and there is never a shortage of projects.  UB (Uncle Bob) has already said potato soup with grilled ham and cheese for Friday and I hear liver and onions are scheduled somewhere in the week.  

Good luck hunters!
Amanda

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Wigglyville

As a professional fisherman, I have lots of tricks up my sleeve!  All of the cutting edge gizmos and gadgets.  My tackle box full of all the "bells and whistles" of fishing. 



Okay, who am I kidding?!  I'm old fashion. 



Here is my checklist of items I need to go fishing:
1)  Fishing pole-closed reel since I'm not smart enough to use anything else.  (I do just fine even with the kid's Barbie pole; I secretly like it better than my new pole)
2)  Bobber-I like the plain red/white kind and in the medium size...not too big and not too small
3)  Cold Drink
4)  Sun Glasses
5)  Towel...maybe used to sit on and maybe wipe hand on. 
6)  Pliers...if I can find them
7)  ..........AND WORMS!   Plain ol' good worms.  Real ones!  Not smelly fake ones...not a lure, not anything else...just a plain fishing worms.  

One downfall of being a worm/bobber kind of fisherman, your bait doesn't wait for you in the tackle box.  So we thought it might be fun to start a worm bed.

After some "research" on the internet and using what we had on hand, we decided to wing it!  List of criteria:  Low maintenance, easy setup, self producing and out of the way

So we started with a blue plastic 55 gallon drum flipped upside down.  Cut a square in it to create a door for the worms.  Drilled holes in the lid to let rain in.   Added a handle for ease of opening.  And added metal straps inside to have a lip for the lid to sit on.       

On the bottom (not shown), we covered any openings with mesh screen and used zip ties to secure it for water drainage but no worms can get out. 

Then it was time to set the worm house in the ground.  We named our worm house, "Wigglyville"   We do everything with tractors but this heavy machinery isn't an essential tool to build your worm house. 

 Next step was to level the ground out.  Grandpa and his helpers did a great job! 

 
 Prepare dirt:  We used a mixture of humus, top soil, manure and paper shreds.   
 
Last step...Add worms.  We ordered Red Wigglers mostly because it was fun to say!  And boy do they live up to their name!  And add a little house warming present of beer.  ;)



Add veggie peels and scraps...pretty much everything except meat (otherwise you'll have a critter problem). 

Three months later we noticed babies and I think it was 6 months later we could start using them. 

Whether you catch the big ones (Grandpa Randy's) or little ones (like mine) hope you can enjoy your fishing with your home grown worms!  



Amanda

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Strawberries Take Two....


As novice strawberry "farmers", 2 rows of strawberries were planted back in 2010 and had a couple of great years....

Our first 2 rows were planted.
 
The next year they exploded in growth!  Quickly went from 2 nice rows to a true "patch". 


 Enormous strawberry and tall plants!  We the crop was larger than expected!



My son Jake (at age 4) was eating them straight from the vines but we did manage to make several batches of freezer jam.  My daughter Kylie suggested we just squeeze the berries instead of slice which worked out quite well! 


Freezer jam a huge success!
 
Everyone enjoyed the freezer jam!  Jeremy even said it tasted just like his Grandmas. (I took that as a nice compliment.) 

It was a bit runny but I thought I'd have plenty of years of practice to find the perfect consistency. 

Well, I was dead wrong, 2012 brought us nothing....besides seeing the plants grow and not produce much any.  After advice from my Uncle Roger and learning about mother plants and their "runners", we are replanting this year!

I've already ordered my berries from Gurney's.  3 varieties some say they are as big as peaches!  So we will see.  We are thinking about going with the raised bed option.  

Anyway, you'll be seeing our progress once spring comes and we can actually be outside.

As of today, the farm has about 2 feet of snow within the last week and 40 mph winds.  We'll take the weatherman's word for it....Too cold to find out!

Advice welcome!  Just comment on this blog post.

Thanks,
Amanda

Friday, February 15, 2013

Please Bring on Spring

And as the weather tends to yo-yo in mid-February in Missouri,  60° yesterday and now 30° today (actually it's like this year round; you just never know what you are going to get).  But it does get you thinking of Spring when you have warm days in the middle of winter! 

Plus after spending a week cruising the seas and basking the sun, we are all going a bit stir crazy coming back to the cold and winter coats!  And Yes, we cruised with Carnival but we have been back for a few weeks and weren't at drift like the Triumph was. 

My kiddos showing off their souvenirs from Jamaica.  
Jeremy and Grandpa Randy holding up the bar at Red Frog's on the ship.

All the seed magazines are coming in the mail and in my inbox is full of "Free" offers if you place your order now.  That means Spring is on the way, right?

I have been keeping Jeremy busy with home improvements while it's too cold to go to the farm.  I'm sure he loves that!  Hanging crown molding throughout the entire house minus the bedrooms and picking out paint colors.  Talking about bathroom renovations and trim upgrades; I'm sure Jeremy is ready for Spring as well!

SEND SPRING SOON!  Here's a glimpse of what's to come!

Fishing....I know, it's a whopper of fish. 
Garden Harvests
Roadside stands
 Zip Line Fun
And best yet....Family Fun! 
So if you see Spring, send it our way!   We are all tired of hibernation mode.  Lots more fun when the weather is warm! 

Amanda




Sunday, January 6, 2013

Breakfast Casseroles

As you know by now, the farm houses and feeds many friends and family during the year.  A big breakfast is always served as well of big dinner (no lunches served; you're on your own for that).     

Here's a several of my favorite breakfast casseroles that are easy and delicious!


Ham & Cheese Crescent Bake by Pillsbury
This one is one of my favorites since you don't have to make it the night before and it's super simple!  You can work with any meat and cheese of your choice.  I usually add a few more eggs if I need to feed more.

French Toast Bake by Pillsbury
My kids favorite!  

Sunrise Casserole by Johnsonville
Make this last weekend and it was so good!  I will definitely make it again!  And it feeds 16 people!

Brunch Pizza

Found this in a magazine and took a picture.  Not sure what magazine it came out of.  I made it in a deep 9x13 pan cause I didn't have a pizza pan.

Here is the original recipe:

Brunch Pizza
Yields 6-8 Servings

1 pound bulk pork sausage
1 tube (8 oz) refrigerated crescent rolls
1 cup frozen shredded hash browns
1 cup (4 oz) shredded cheddar cheese
5 eggs
1/4 cup milk
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese

  1. Cook and crumble sausage; drain and set aside.
  2. Separate crescent roll dough into eight triangles and place on an ungreased 12 inch round pizza pan with all points toward center.  
  3. Press over the bottom and up the sides to form a crust; seal perforations.  
  4. Spoon sausage over crust; sprinkle with hash browns and cheddar cheese.
  5. In a bowl, beat eggs, milk, salt and pepper; pour over cheese.  Sprinkle with Parmesan.
  6. Bake at 375 for 25-30 minutes or until crust is golden.
Hope you enjoy these recipes!

What do you make when you  have a bunch of mouths to feed?

Amanda

  

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Christmas Thoughts...

Here's a few thoughts for the day....

1.  I can no longer sing the 12 days of Christmas after hearing 12 days of Farming over and over and over.

2.  Blake Shelton Christmas CD is my new favorite CD and I can't get enough of "Oklahoma Christmas" (even got the kids singing it).


3.  Think I finally got my house back in order...at least you can see the floor.  


4.  It's sure cold in Missouri and we're not getting any snow.... 

5.  Trying to decide what new recipe to make for breakfast this weekend at the farm.


6.  Put out my new bird house at home and waiting patiently for birds to come. 


Merry Christmas from the Harris Family!
 
So long for now...
Amanda

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

12 Days of Farming

In the spirit of Christmas, my daughter Kylie inspired the making of our new (and only) song, "Twelve Days of Farming".  After a few sessions in the song writing mode, the song evolved. 

And here it is....

 

Stay tuned for the outtakes coming soon!  

Merry Christmas!

Amanda