High Winds

It sure was fun trying to sleep last night with the wind howling around the house…that means that summer is over….the temperatures will drop and frost will be on it’s way.
The chickens sure didn’t like the windy day…only 7 eggs.
Just when we thought it was safe to put the canner away…my Dad brought a box of pears. We canned 16 quarts of pears…small but tasty. I’ll make a couple more quarts of peppers today.

Basement clean up

Saturday we worked for about 6 hours in the basement…eeew! We have an infestation of spiders and millipedes.
I finished the touch up on the bedroom paint and urethaned the window sills (finally.)
Ryan helped Dad move furniture and other stuff for a hour or so…queen bed down and bunk beds up and worms to the garage (they have a nasty case of fruit fly-itis and I couldn’t handle that inside any more.)
We scrubbed and cleaned and moved and tossed and got things ready for our first session of The Truth Project. We are moving home group to the basement for the winter. Hopefully the heat will go in this week. Thanks Randy!

TGIF!!!

So thankful for Friday. Not that we will have much rest this weekend, but at least we will be together.
It seems that my “kids” are all going through the same phase at once….they repeat everything over and over…my least favorite phase. I need earplugs:)
Not much happening outside the last few days. My 5+ foot tall cosmos FINALLY bloomed only to snap off the very same day…at least they look pretty in the vase.
Ryan has been slowly but surely working on the workshop/goat-shed…the gnats have been nearly unbearable this week.
I have been dogging away at the basement bedroom. It needs a bit more touch up, paint-wise and then a thorough scrubbing before we can move furniture. We only have one week to get the basement in order for the Truth Project.
This morning I rounded up a truck load of stuff for Shelli to take to Harry & Amelia’s yard sale. That got rid of a bit of junk in the basement. Later, I replaced the torn border in the nap room and killed a few more spiders.
Tonight we have dinner with Dave & Iva and Brian & Lori-good times…I’ll be roasting a chicken.
Tomorrow the weatherman is calling for 80% chance of rain…not sure if we’ll be able to do anything outside but there is enough to do in the basement to keep us busy all weekend.
Sunday is Home Group-the men are”cooking” and cleaning up-nice. In the evening, my folks will come for dinner.

More Peppers…

Yesterday was very busy. I boiled all the wee potatoes and peeled them. I put up 5 more pints of beets and another gallon bag of broccoli. I painted the ” Savanna” room in the basement. I picked another big bowl of peppers. We got 17 eggs from 18 chickens…they must have been very happy yesterday. I baked three pies…one was an experimental recipe…Simply Orange Mango juice…kind of like lemon meringue only kickier…
Today I will wash all the bedding and get ready to move things downstairs. I was up at 5:30 am making food for a neighbor who got very ill from getting a flu shot. Stuffed 8 peppers and will make more pepper rings later.
Full load of kids today…lots of little boys…fun.

The produce rolls in…

As garden clean up continues, we are finding a few more treasures under the weeds. Last evening we dug potatoes…it was pretty paltry-about 15 lbs. We were late getting them planted and I think the “straw” had too much poo in it. We also pulled another bucket of beets and found a few tiny watermelons (we’ll feed those to the home group kids on Sunday.)

Tonight I will paint the front downstairs bedroom in preparation for rearranging the bedrooms and getting the basement ready for home group.

We didn’t really end up saving any seeds this year but still have a bunch left over so we’re okay for next year.

More work in the gardens.

I’d really like to use this blog as blogs were intended to be used; kind of a daily on line diary of the happenings here at Big Oak Ridge.

Unfortunately, there never seems to be enough time in a day …

Monday night I attended my first township meeting (see citizens for a free pa for information on that).
Paula wrote an article for the local paper about the March on Washington (never heard anything back).

Tuesday night I went to prayer meeting.
Paula washed all the outside toys for the play yard and washed the truck.

Wednesday we mowed grass (fast and furious!) got MOST of the yard done by dark. It wasn’t the best mowing job we’ve ever done, but at least we don’t have to use  a machete to get from the house to the chicken coop.

Thursday we picked tomatoes. We’ve started putting the garden to bed, so we’re pulling plants as we harvest. We got some more cucumbers and squash also. In the process of harvesting the tomatoes we found two “volunteer” potato plants with some nice potatoes on them!

Friday Paula processed tomato juice, mopped the floors, made some more pickled peppers, and did the laundry. Friday afternoon Paula paid bills (we had a REAL MIRACLE there! Thank you JESUS!), took Shelli and the grandkids to do some errands. I met up with them after work and we had dinner at Long John Silver’s.

I’ve spent a lot of time this week on the new web site, Citizens for a Free Pennsylvania (so has Ryan). We’ve got it pretty much up and running now; all we need is some volunteer “cub reporters” to attend meetings and report back on issues and items of interest.

Today I became a “township worker” – I went and purchased a truck load of unwashed limestone and filled in some holes on my road. I got another load of 1B limestone and fixed the front patio area by the ponds.  We hosted my mom and our son Jon for dinner; Jon is staying with us for the weekend. Tomorrow  “Big Oak Ridge Fellowship of Believers” (our home group ) will be here.

Final Beef Totals


Our final expenses for the beef totaled $2705.18 and our total poundage was 1408. Our end total was $1.92 per pound…not bad for “scrub” cattle. Next year perfection.

More wildlife at Big Oak Ridge

This large frog is one of several living in our fish ponds. Our fish don’t seem to mind, but I’m guessing we’d have a lot more baby fish if it weren’t for these guys.

More Garden Produce

The garden is winding down for the year and we’ve started putting it to bed.

The tomatoes got blighted this year and we didn’t get very many. We were pretty bummed about that because we had planned on making sauce, salsa,  ketchup, etc. this year. Hopefully next year will be better for tomatoes.
The beans, of course, did well (they always do). I’m not complaining, I like beans, so that’s not a bad thing. We also got some winter squash which I am thankful for. I hope it tastes good – the fruit looks good but the vines looked pathetic, so I wonder what the quality will be like.
We need to figure out what we’re doing right and what we’re doing wrong. Overall I expected our garden to produce better this year than it did, and that concerns me somewhat. We might need to actually do some of those “master gardener” things like check our soil composition and pH, etc.
Well, next year perfection.

Wildlife at Big Oak Ridge – a really big TOAD!

We found this toad while we were working in the flower beds. He was HUGE! We left him there to eat the bugs; judging from the size of him he must be doing a good job!