Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Getting the garden ready

Today the boys plowed up the garden area as I need to get some brocolli, romaine lettuce, Swiss Chard, Kolrobi, early peas in the ground.

We haven't started plowing up the leased field yet, but this garden work will get Old Man (the horse) in shape. This year we are thinking about sunflowers (seeds are great for lactating cows) and sweet sorghum (syrup, grain for hogs, and fodder). Lots of work.

Our gilt Henri (daughter of Harry-get the trend) had her first litter today-maybe still in process. Last check she had between 10 and 12 piglets.

Another great day!

Oremus pro invicem!

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

What’s up with gas prices? Two weeks ago I could find gas for $3.14/gal. This morning I saw $3.75 (although I bought gas for $3.50).

Butchered our bull (800+ lbs) this past week after ascertaining that our Jersey was bred. I am really hoping for a heifer (well, we always do). But this time especially, as the bull was a Brown Swiss cross. My favorite milk cow was part Brown Swiss.

The slaughter and butcher went well, especially considering we had only one extra hand helping. The weather cooperated too-giving us three days to hang at least two quarters before butchering. But I am surely glad it is over. After Batman 2 weeks ago and the bull this past week, I don’t want to see anything over 300 lbs for a while.

I saved the loin for steaks and the brisket for corned beef (and of course the tongue). I also cut a half dozen or so roasts, but the majority was put to ground beef. Alas our grinder appears to be broken with about 20 lbs left to grind.

I am disappointed in the grinder. We only had it a year or so. With most hogs, we are only grinding 20 or so pounds in a given day. With the bull, we were careful to grind only about 40 lbs at a time before giving it a good rest. But apparently even this was too much for it. Friends of ours had the same model and it also broke after grinding about 30-40 pounds. Industrial meat grinders really cost ….

Oremus pro invicem!

Wednesday, February 06, 2013


Here's a repost of a picture of one of our gamecocks and hens from last year. And below that a shot of our newest litter (we had 2 last week) nursing. And below that, some more work being done on 'Batman' with some friends watching-they didn't just watch, this was a great effort by all.

Oremus pro invicem!

Saturday, February 02, 2013


Yesterday we slaughtered and dressed 'Batman'. He was a very special hog: raised on cream (1/2 gallon per day), peanuts, and grain. We felt he was too big to process this summer, and then things (including warm winter) prevented us from doing this sooner. As you can see, he is/was a monster.

Oremus pro invicem!