Saturday, November 19, 2011

Eat it or Love it?

The debate has been brought up again recently with ads like these:

Appearing in the TTC, what is the difference between eating a dog when we all eat pigs? (The creators of the ads are promoting vegan lifestyles).

May I offer this as an explanation?
Yes, the pot-bellies are very cute, now, while they are young. So were the tiny little meat chickens, very "cute". Human beings are not going to all switch over to a vegan diet tomorrow, so my argument is that in the mean time we need to push for better education of consumers and welfare for the animals we eat.

You want to live a vegan lifestyle go for it! But be aware that our omnivorous lifestyle may be far more environmentally sustainable. We produce our own organic foods, breed the animals here & slaughter locally. Do your research for yourself before climbing on your high-horse. You can't listen to the propaganda the big "animal welfare" groups are spitting out, because it is as bad as the propaganda from the big meat sellers.

So why should be eat pigs when we don't eat dogs? Because a dog isn't going to eat you if you knock yourself unconscious and fall in their pen.

A pig is a pig is a PIG. And while I don't actually like pork all that much, we still eat it on occasion. Is it better that it's coming from a huge factory farm kilometers away? Or from a small breeding group in our backyard?

While our two still don't have names, we aren't planning on eating them. Pot bellies do make good meat pigs because they are very lean, and easy to raise on small amounts of land.

Has great info all about raising pot bellies for meat, and what the differences in the meat are.

I hope I never come off as being up on my high-horse, I really don't judge anyone who chooses to buy their meat at big grocery chains. We used to do it, and between supply still would. If you compare prices you may be very surprised that buying conventional farm-gate meat can be a lot cheaper then buying from the store.

I am very passionate about our farm, so I will talk your ear off about why I think all meat/production animals should be cared for with respect and under organic principals.

Friday, November 18, 2011

KSCC: Holiday Presents

Well actually, I'm working on Christmas presents... so I can't talk about that.

Instead, I'm going to talk about a great source of inspiration:

Now if you haven't checked this out yet, you're missing out on a sort of creative artistic ebay like site. Maybe if Ravelry and Ebay had a baby...

Anyway, gobs & gobs of amazing creative hand-made, vintage, beautiful creations. I can spend hours on there looking at all the amazing work (but of course then I wouldn't get any work done!). If you're not a very artsy/crafty person there is lots of stuff to buy, you can support small artists & hobbiest while giving your friends or family something truly unique. If you are artsy Etsy can also be a great source of inspiration!

Meredith Dada
Meridith Dada on etsy makes these exquisite little beaded birds. If you wanted to make one, gluing the beads on to a form would be time-consuming, but it looks like a lot of fun.

I used to make all sorts of bead animals just with beads & string. It's like knitting fair isle.

I love these up-cycled prints on old pages, this is one of my favourites. I think they'd look really nice framed in series and grouped together. Be a little cautious when purchasing, RococcoCos are original artwork, but I've seen others that are free photoshop brushes printed out, not really worth the money.

Art Whims
These simple but elegant little snowmen, are so creative! Cutting out and painting some very basic wooden ones can make great placeholders or even gift tags that can be used year after year.

There are tons of great stockings (you can get kits from places like knitpicks) you can have customized for the kids. I also love the painted ball ornaments, with glitter or metallic coloured paint you can turn a really simple and cheap ornament into something beautiful.

Okay I've got some work to do!

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Today on the Farm

Coco kicked one of her eggs out of the nest.
You can see how spotty the brown one is,
my guess is that it is very rotten and it
went right into the garbage.
 Spotty eggs can be a sign of bacterial contamination.
The white one is just a regular egg layed that day.

Billy is feeling a little lighter,
happy to be out of the car!

I got in actual physical confrontation with
the goose!
 Someone needs to learn his manners or we'll be having goose for Christmas dinner... I'm sure I provided a lot of entertainment for everyone driving down the road, standing out in the field fighting with my goose!
We never found the horn, but Billy's head is
slowly growing back

The horses are pretending there is still grass
outside. We should have snow or at least
the ground should be frozen by now!
 Meg has also dumped her halter out in the field... I better go find it before it does snow.
Steak is being a total suck.
 Talked to the farmer we bought him from last night, we should keep them separated for at least another week before he can go back in with the other cows. He also said "If you want a pet, nows the time to gentle him", yes he was joking... steak is of course is only going to grow larger from here and is still a bull.
Harry is very very upset with all the
attention everyone else is getting.

Billy's Ball

So Billy is feeling a little lighter after this morning. A quick surgery (only took an hour, we just drove around town for awhile) and he'll be a happy wether here for the rest of his life! It cost us about $100, which we could have avoided by waiting a few weeks longer before with elasto-banded him the first time; but we were under the impression it was going to be a lot more expensive. Now we don't have to worry about his displaying ram behaviour with those huge horns of him.

Harry is happiest of all as he was the one Billy was taking out his, uh..., unresolved hormones out on...

Actually it was the same Dr. Ken Newman (who is also a vet surgeon) who fixed up Diego's Leg. The Prescott Animal Hopsital (where Billy went) and the Rideau St. Lawrence Vet (who fixed up Diego) are all the same practice, so I ran into all the same Techs today. They are all lovely people but I hope we won't be seeming them again too soon!

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Diego's Leg

So Diego is all better, he was a total ham at the vet's office! I'm starting to think he'd make a great therapy/education goat.

His leg has healed very well, the vet says there is no movement at all where the bone has nit. He's got very little muscle tone in that leg, but I'm sure he'll bulk up pretty quickly keeping up with Harry & Billy. Diego's still a little hesitant to use the leg as he goes, but there doesn't seem to be any pain.

Now, what you really want to know. For the same price as a reasonably nice grade Saanen milking doe, preg. for next year, we fixed our adorable pet wether. The total vet bill was about $200, which the gals at Rooney's put in great context. If he was a dog or cat it could have easily cost us 5 times as much.

The vets at Rideau St. Lawrence did an amazing job with Dee. The cast worked great and the bone healed nice and straight. We could have DIYed the whole thing, and if it happens again may be we will, for now I'm just happy to have one happy bouncy goat back to health.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Today on The Farm

Diego got his cast off! Yeah Diego! 
The piggies got to go outside and run around
I've decided I really like these Turkeys

And that we live on the funny farm
(love Maddie's face!!)
Had to move CoCo to the dog kennel after
the BPR tried to steal her nest

Momma still has all 4 and they are doing well!

A lot less running around
this time, just nosing about
looking for food

I had to fix the fence beside the over-hang
Also love the half-buried metal

Use enough nails!?!?
More fun surprises!
Guess when this window broke no one picked
up the glass.
I got to pick through horse poo & nettles without
my gloves one to pick it up.

Apparently it rained a little bit last night...
Steak has figured out I will feed him out of pity if he
moos enough, and is now driving me crazy.
Diego's not quite sure on that leg yet,
but doing better!

I hate this squirrel.
It loves to sit in trees and drive the dogs crazy.
Can you make squirrel pot-pie?

Monday, November 14, 2011

Stuffing a Chicken.

 Our chickens, accidentally, ended up between 2kgs & our biggest was 3.5kgs (approx 4.4lbs - 7.7lbs); the biggest are far larger then anything you'll find at the grocery store. All the 3kg+ serve 4 people quite well. We like them so much we're going to change our plans for next year & grow some this large on purpose this time.

In fact, they are so big you can stuff them.

And it was delicious.

This was the really simple stuffing recipe I used, really quick on a weekday night. With home-layed eggs (or free-range farm fresh) you're going to want to reduce the number of eggs. Ours just seem to stretch a lot more then store-bought ever do.

I am wishing that I'd cut up some of the chickens before we froze them, we love roast chicken but having just a few breasts or something would be nice.

Since we froze them right away, it's best to leave them out in the fridge for 2-3 days to thaw and they improve in texture over that time. The birds are really flavourful and juicy.

I'd also love to hear any new recipes anyone wants to suggest.

Sunday, November 13, 2011


Well... we have two boys!

This is the CUTEST thing I have every seen turkeys do.

Looks like we're going to have some amazing toms!

Luckily it also looks like they are fighting over/trying to impress (or practicing too) a little Jenny, so we'll have a mating pair & thanksgiving dinner for next year.