It's certainly beginning to get very busy around here.
Once a month Shopping
One thing that several of you have been asking me about is my once a month shopping. I am happy to report it is doing quite well. I was successful in January and so far everything is set to be working out for February. This is great for several reasons. The first reason is that it keeps me out of town! We live in a rural area and it would take half a Saturday morning to drive into town, do all the grocery shopping and drive home. By only going one day per month I am saving gas money, and allowing myself to be around the house more. I'm also finding that I'm saving money by buying in bulk and sticking to my list. This past month I really tried hard to design my meal plan around the freezer and pantry since I still had a ton of stuff I had canned or frozen from last year. It's about time to start putting up new fresh goodies, so I need to make sure we eat up what we have on hand first. So this month we have had lots of deer meat, soups, corn on the cob ( I froze I think 24 bags last year, each bag can make 2 meals for us), and salsa and tomato based dished from all the canned tomatos I put up last year. March will be another clean out the freezer and pantry month, so my food budget then should be lower also.
My uncle lives a few miles down the road and has a nice tractor, this weekend he came and plowed up the 3 different plots we use for gardening. We planted 2 new blueberry bushes in the yard and I can't wait until they start producing. These are rather large bushes and are supposed to already be 1year old, so hopefully we might see some fruit from them this year. I put up only 2 gallons of blueberries last year ( in addition to the jam, and what we ate fresh) and that was no where near enough for our blueberry loving family.
We also planted 8 brussel sprout plants, 4 cabbage, 4 ice berg lettuce, 8 brocolli and 8 cauliflower yesterday. I have several things started inside also.
My oldest daughter is trying to decide what kinds of chickens she wants to show for 4H this year. She wants some "really fancy ones" so I've let her sit down with my chicken book and pick out a few options. She keeps coming back to the Silkies so I'm thinking we'll be the proud new owners of several of those soon. The other chickens are all doing fine. It's beginning to get warmer here so our hens are starting to lay a little more regularly again. We are getting 6-7 eggs a day, which in all honestly isn't enough for our family of four, considering most mornings we have scrambled eggs, and then for lunch my daughter wants a hard boiled egg or two, then whatever baking or cooking I do normally requires a few. But we are making it work for now until they all start producing again. Clifford ( the goat) is enjoying the nicer weather also , as are the rabbits, guinea pigs, dogs and cat.
As always, cooking keeps me busy as well. Our family loves to eat and thankfully aren't picky. I've really gotten into homeade ravioli, and we have it at least once a week, same with homeade pizza. I've discovered how delicious homeade pretzels are as well and those are a welcome treat around here. I love the magazine "Hobby Home Farm" and they always have some great recipes in them. Every time I get my issue I pour over it. They had a recipes for chocolate Meringe cookies that were outstanding. That recipe and pick will be coming in a different post.
Well that's probably enough for today. Happy Homestead hopping!!!