Monday, January 30, 2012

Plain and Simple

 At the cottage this week....

First are pictures of a field trip we had a few weeks ago at one of the many Ray Kroc community centers around the country. This one is in Biloxi, MS, and very nice. It was fun to swin in January.

After lunch we played volleyball, it was a fun day with a bunch of other homeschoolers and our 4H club.

 Today is cheese making day, so I have 2 gallons of fresh milk that I skimmed the cream off to make butter. The cream is set aside to culture and  after culturing the milk I added the rennet.

 I put an order in for more culture and while I was ordering I added a Butter Keeper or butter bell. This is so you can have soft butter without the problems of it going bad.

 It has homemade butter in it, I love the pretty yellow. The cows that our milk comes from are on pasture but since rye grass can be grown here during the winter the cows get green pasture most of the year, so our butter is always this pretty yellow.

Our ducks are laying like crazy so I did something a little different I pickled a bunch for later use. This summer they will taste good in potato salads etc. I might dill pickle the next batch, Wyatt pickled some  quail eggs from his quail and made them hot with peppers and cayenne.

Ashley and I have projects going of cross stitch hers is the dragonflys, mine is the daisy.

 She is also sewing a quilt, like the one I did for Wyatt. She started cutting it yesterday. We also bought the fabric for a quilt for me to make when she is done with hers. The fabric store had a wonderful sale on cotton fabrics so we had fun picking hers and mine out.

We had a lovely Sunday afternoon together since the boys were gone doing church stuff. We cross stitched, cutting fabric, laughed, and talked. Lovely mother daughter time.
We have also been digging up the front yard to make a cottage garden for our little cottage. My collection of milk cans for decoration. Hubby bought them for me about 14 years ago.

If the grass was green you would see better the beds we have dug up. We're hoping to put fencing and arbors. The arbors for wild roses and passion flower vine. The little floating beds will have zinnias and cosmos, the border beds will have herbs, and the exsisting beds we're going to put more lantana. We have lots of butterflys, hummingbirds, and bees so a feast for them.

Also getting the garden ready, mulching with hay. Over the weekend we spread horse manure and hay to start a new garden area. This year we hoping it produces a little since this is a new bed and will take time to soften and the hay to compost down. We use a deep mulch and don't till at all, we actually sold our 2 tillers a few years ago.

This is our exsisting garden it was 50x75 but it was extended so Wyatt could have his own area for experimenting.

Spring is springing here and very early as well. I have noticed things popping up that normally are coming out in March. We saw a dogwood profusely blooming Saturday. We are hoping this isn't a sign that hurricane season might be a doozy this year.

I hope all have a wonderful lovely week.




  1. But Spring is arriving in your side of the world Erika! What a blessing :-)

  2. Sounds like you are having a delightful time in your part of the world. I am hoping that Ashely will allow you to show her finished quilt. I would LOVE to see it! :)

    Although we are not getting spring-like weather here, it has been warmer than usual for a winter. We usually get much rain, and it's been rather dry. My fear is that we'll be in drought by summer time. I hope not.


  3. Dear Erika,

    Such beautiful things happening at your home! I am so excited for your future cottage garden with its lovely arbors. I can see it in my mind! I love old milk cans, too, and was sad to have to leave ours in Idaho when we moved.

    Spring is springing early here, too, but I'm just going to enjoy the pretty weather and not think any foreboding thoughts about the future! ;)




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