Thursday, February 10, 2011

glimpse of today

This is Dutchess, our 16 year old farm cat, It's amazing to me how young she still looks and acts, I hope I can maintain my looks half as good as she has.  I got her as a kitten when my oldest daughter(who's 20) was only 4 years old.  She's an outdoor barn cat, although we do let her into the bottom of the shop when it's open, she likes to lay next to the water heater for warmth.  Years ago when she was young she had 2 litters of kittens, she's been in fights, been moved, had close calls with something that left a lot of fur missing and a huge cut on her face, it all grew back.  She exclusively likes Purina Cat Chow, and is the spokesperson(cat) if the food dish is empty. She loves to be with me in the garden on sunny days, and likes to sit with us on the porch like all the animals do.  Our dogs and other 2 cats all have immense respect for her. I'm not sure how long cats can live, but she's going strong with her 9 lives.

The water pump out by the chickens and rabbits, I use this everyday to fill their water bottles, and fonts.

Jarin using his chisel to carve a joint in a beam.

A young pregnant mini rex doe, we have 3 pregnant does due in a couple weeks.  They are pregnant for about 31 days, and usually have from 4-6 babies.

PS. This last week I've been studying soap making.  I finally decided now was as good a time as ever to start.  I've been wanting to make soap for a long time, and have studied it over the years.  Yesterday I made a list, and spent the day  gathering supplies, and running around getting all the things I will need.  One of the biggest things I needed to find was suet (the fat around a cows kidneys) to render into tallow.  I stopped by a family friend that is a meat cutter, they were working on a side of beef when we showed up, and I got to see what suet looks like, they said they have plenty and could save it for me over the next couple days.  I was so glad to find this, and will happily share some soap with them.   I will be sharing with you in another post the supplies I gathered, and the baby steps of learning to make soap.   


bluetick said...

When you get it mastered I will be taking lessons from you since I too have been wanting to try my hand at soap making!

I am still trying to get sourdough starter to work for me...I read your post at least 5 times did a ton of research but still don't think it's working. I have a hard time keeping it warm enough in here and even though its been 5 days and I have fed it each day just like you did I still have no bubbles. Smells sour but no bubbles. I may have to wait until we get in the house and we have a wood stove to keep it by direct warmth all day.

Looking forward to your soap posts...Tracy

Jewel said...

Hi Tracy,

Sourdough starter is tricky, my first couple attempts were a disaster, and I had to throw the batch out and start over. The rye flour helps, that was the first lesson I learned, second was warmth, it needs warmth like bread needs when it's rising.

If it's cold it just takes longer, and you don't want to feed it as much, until you see some bubbles. One way that would work would be to put a lightbulb inside a cooler, and keep the lid open a crack.
Or just wait for the weather to warm up.
Good luck!