in Blog, Canning, Chickens, Farmlife, Published in Daily Press

How you should store your eggs Egg

I lived in Ireland for a few years and one of the things that shocked me the most was going to the grocery store and seeing unrefrigerated eggs sitting on the shelf. I thought it was almost barbaric and I couldn’t imagine how many people got sick from such a backwards practice. Now I know better. Salmonella on My Eggs Although I didn’t know at the time, salmonella was what I worried about when I saw these grocery store shelf eggs.  Salmonella is almost ubiquitous in eggs.  It is a bacteria that comes from chicken feces and can make us…

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in Blog, Farmlife

Update after the Surgery

So a lot of you have been asking for updates from after the surgery and I have just been in too much pain and too tired to provide it for all of you until now. For those of you who don’t have a clue what is going on, my wonderful beautiful horse Tarik had a sore back and I, thinking that he was over it, was violently disabused of that notion. I prefer to call it an unplanned dismount but really, he bucked me off. I landed right on my wrist and it only took a glance to see that my…

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in Blog, Farmlife

The night before the surgery and a tribute to the value of neighbors

Tomorrow morning I go in for surgery on my arm.  I am very nervous. I am sure it will go fine as these things usually do, but who am I kidding, statistics don’t make anyone feel better.  I am definitely ready to feel better. Chances are with this surgery that as soon as the plate and screws are put in that my arm will feel pretty much instantaneously better.  If I could cross my fingers I would. It has been very difficult this past two weeks since I haven’t been able to do any work.  You certainly learn the value…

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in Blog, Farmlife, Horse riding

Tarik, the culprit who broke my arm

It has been very frustrating to have this broken arm.  I am not allowed to do anything except sit here and “keep it elevated.”  I can’t feed the animals, I can’t even brush my own hair. I certainly can’t go out and ride my horse. It is very depressing in a way because I have been working so hard the past few months to really get better at my riding skills. The doctor says with this type of break, I may not be able to ride a horse for up to six months. Oh well. There is nothing to be…

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in Blog, Farming, Farmlife, Published in Daily Press

Farmer Safety and My Broken Arm

As I sit at my computer, awkwardly attempting to type this article with one hand, I am inspired to reflect on the dangers of farming.  Granted, my arm is broken from training a horse, but livestock injuries are an all too common part of farming and this is definitely not my first farm injury. Dealing with large animals, long hours, big equipment, bad weather and other intense conditions, farmers don’t just sit on their porches all day sipping lemonade. Our work can actually be quite dangerous. A decade-long study of farm safety issues shows that injuries and fatalities can almost…

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in Blog, farm business, Farmlife

Farmville vs. Real Farmers

I have never been a big fan of the online game, Farmville.  I just could never see the attraction to it when I had my own farm right outside.  If I wanted to farm, I just needed to walk outside and go fill up a waterer or muck a pen.  However, somewhere around 60 million Farmville players disagree with me. Farming is not just for the guys anymore The average farmville player is a 43 year old woman while the average farmer is a 57 year old man.  Only 30% of farmers are women; however, female farmers are the fastest…

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in Blog, Farm education, Farmlife

Waldorf Schools visit the Ranch

We have been blessed with 8 year olds coming out of our ears. And yes, I do mean we’ve been blessed.  This year we have had multiple Waldorf schools come to the ranch for their third grade farm visit.  And we have enjoyed their visit so much that we have actually decided to focus on schools! A Waldorf school, for those of you who don’t know, is a school that follows educational principles laid out by Rudolf Steiner. It is a well-rounded approach to education that involves the whole child–head, hands, and heart.  They are very hands on, very active,…

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in Blog, Farmlife, Natural Health, Recipes and Cooking

My Water Kefir Bomb

I have a bomb.  It’s on the kitchen counter.  I’m very worried. My wonderful, dear neighbor gave me a jar of water kefir grains.  I was very excited.  I’ve wanted to try making water kefir for a long time but I’ve been too much of a cheapskate to actually purchase the grains.  Water kefir is basically fermented water.  Kefir grains are crystals of probiotic bacteria that ferment sugar water into a glass of pure digestive delight.  So when my neighbor gave me some of her kefir grains, I was very excited. However, I have no idea how to care for…

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in Blog, Farmlife

Lighting for Small-Scale Flocks

Developed by Robert Hawes, Professor Emeritus of Animal and Veterinary Science, University of Maine.  Reviewed by Richard Brzozowski, Extension Professor, University of Maine.  It is well known that light intensity and the length of the daily light period will influence growth rate and reproduction in poultry flocks. The first person credited with using a systematic lighting pattern for laying hens was E. C. Waldorf, a medical doctor from Buffalo, New York. The year was 1889, and Dr. Waldorf’s claim that his birds averaged ten eggs per week under artificial lights probably did much to create an interest in this new…

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in Blog, Farmlife, Farmstay

10 tips for exploring the farm safely on a farm days out with the kids

There are few better ways to spend a day as a family than to spend a day at the farm petting animals, collecting eggs, milking goats and exploring nature. We all get a healthy dose of fresh air, build muscles as we run around trying to catch a chicken, and slow down our pace of life by listening to the sound of sheep baa’ing and pig oinking.  It’s nature’s therapy.     Before you pack the kids into the car excited about seeing a duck. Here are a few tips for exploring the farm with kids: 1) If it’s a…

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