Monday, May 25, 2009

Sage Drying and Spectral Mountains

Ahhh, I love national holidays. They rock. So I'm making the most of mine. A little while back I finished another quilt and didn't post it. It is the 2007 block of the month from Creekside Quilting in Des Moines, and I rearranged it to an all over pattern. The pattern is Delectable Mountains, and so I named mine Spectral Mountains. Of course, now I have no idea what I'm going to do with it. Perhaps keep it for a toddler's bed? I did the machine quilting myself and I think the spiral quilting pattern worked well even though you can't see it well in this picture.

There are lots of flowers blooming in my garden right now, and the lilies-of-the-valley are downright intoxicating. I think I'm getting a little high just sitting here breathing their scent. Ryan is working on planning our fences in this picture, he's trying to figure out what we're going to put in and how we're going to get it in this year. Fences will be a big deal for us and will make life a lot easier.

Challenge question: what is the pretty little purple flower in the arrangement? Hint one: It's not a plant we grow for the flower. Hint two: It has to do with my other activity today...

My sage plant in the garden survived the winter (I had no idea it was a perinnial!) and is now happily going nuts. So I harvested a bunch of it and am starting to dry it. All of it you see on the towels are drying a little before I hang them because I washed all of them off. Anyone want some dried sage...?

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

New Layers & Irises

It's now well into spring, thank goodness! We got some more laying hens, and they are so very cute! The layers are always so much more alert and interested in their world than the broilers. We got Wyandotte, black sex-linked, and red sex-linked. The sex-linked are interesting because that means that the male and female chicks are different colors so you can tell the day they are born.

Our irises are also just starting to bloom! Here is one of our first that isn't just a basic yellow. The previous owners of our house really loved irises and so we have them in
almost every color of the rainbow. I maybe would have gone for lilacs, but I admit that I love the irises and they make a great cut flower.

My favorite garden news is that our blueberries are blooming! Not only did they survive the winter, but they are blooming!! It's hard to see in the picture, but the blooms are small and white and kind of balloon-shaped. I'm so excited. I really didn't know if they would even make it through the winter and here they are blooming. We're still a long way from edible blueberries, but my fingers are crossed!!!

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Morels & Sign Hanging

It's May in Iowa, which means Morel mushroom season! I hadn't actually eaten one before yesterday, but now we know we have them on our land. Not very many (not enough to sell or anything), but gratifying nonetheless. They're pretty good, kind of creamy. I breaded them in flour and fried them in butter, which will make almost anything worth eating. 
Incidentally, Morel season coincides with tick season.... I'm up to two so far, even with bug spray. 
We also got our sign hung up today! I painted it last summer, but now we finally got it mounted to our shop building. Ryan has been making great progress on cleaning buildings, etc., and is doing a really bang-up job of turning this farm around. It's hard to believe we've been here only a year. Ryan also decided to start his own blog, found here:
He wants to update it more frequently than I do mine, and he will probably succeed at that. So go check it out!