Tinker Verve

creating with spirit & enthusiasm…often with great results

Catching up…

I took the girls over this morning to meet Mr. Chrome.  I’m not sure that they understand how exciting this is but I have a feeling they’ll figure it out.  I hope they figure it out.  They actually haven’t been ‘figuring it out’ on their own so I’m hoping that having them near this Big Boy will encourage them.

I left them there.  It makes me sad to have them gone.  You would think that I would enjoy the freedom of not having to milk every twelve hours but I’m not enjoying it at all.

I will, however, look forward to little ones in the spring and lots more fresh milk.

This would be a great place to mention that I love my car!  It’s the perfect car for me.

Last month I attempted to bring Chrome’s scent home on a rag.   It’s a great trick to use when the girls don’t have a buck around but it wasn’t as effective as I had hoped.

Mr. Chrome

I didn’t mean to take a blogging break over the past week and a half {or so}.

I’ve been busy getting ready for winter, submitting info for a magazine article, working towards a new website, making charms…and then there was Thanksgiving.

I picked out a somewhat nice RED for the barn.  I would have preferred a real [brighter] red but I’ve seen enough pink barns that I feared choosing the wrong kind of red would give me a pink barn.  That simply did not appeal to me.  I played it safe and it’s a nice red!

I’m so thankful for some of my favorite guys who have helped me get my goats inside for the winter…my brother put in many Saturdays and built the main structure, my dad helped with a variety of things and Mr. T has put in countless hours.  thanks guys

The snow was falling hard as we were moving them into their new home.

Milking inside that night, where it was dry and much warmer,  was so wonderful.  It has felt very luxurious {if that’s possible} after milking outside for several months.

We’ll probably have to wait until spring to get it all finished {and cute!}.

I wish this was still the scene out of my living room windows.  We lost all of our snow last week.   so sad    Now I have to start wishing again until it comes back!

There is still a give-a-way going on.  Click HERE and leave a comment with that post for a free custom charm!

November 28, 2011 Posted by | farm animals, goats, Hobby~Farm Home life, my neck of the woods! | 5 Comments

building a barn….{love}

I have wanted  my own barn nearly my whole life.

When I was young I loved playing in barns. 

I loved the loft. 

I loved the hay. 

I loved jumping from the loft into the hay.

But, I decided a long time ago that I would probably never have my own barn.

Then we got these funny little goats. 

Goats need a barn.

Since {at this point} we don’t plan to ever have more that two milk goats, we don’t ‘need’ a large barn so we are in the process of building a very small barn for our two goats and their spring kids.

The concrete truck just pulled away and I can’t wait to get it done.

We’re all pretty please with ourselves!

October 13, 2011 Posted by | farm animals, goats, home life, my neck of the woods! | 4 Comments

As the seasons change….

This has been my trusty Market Shopper.  It’s accompanied me to our local farmer’s market and a variety of other happenings lately.

I think that this Friday will be the last Market of the season.

I generally have mixed emotions as each season comes to an end.  I know for some it seems like summer ended a while back but I’ve still been hanging on to remnants of it.  We did have a pretty good freeze this week {30°} so that helps me to make the official transition to fall…which makes me long for a hard, cold, snowy winter!

My own garden/orchard is winding down too but I still have [some] apples and pears and lots of potatoes, carrots, tomatoes and [hopefully] some tomatillos [just waiting for them to do their thing…I’ve been told that you know they’re ready when they drop off the vine…if they don’t freeze first].

I really love pear.

I don’t find it as versatile for my family as apple but I still love it.

It’s a beautiful fruit!

I made this Pear Custard Pie this week.  Oh, so Yummy!…and it just got better on the 2nd, 3rd and 4th day!  Next time I would make it a day ahead.

The goats and chickens are benefiting from the garden clean-up!

October 10, 2011 Posted by | garden, goats, healthy living, home life, in the kitchen, market shopper, my neck of the woods!, news from home | 2 Comments

Goat love :~)

I never, never saw myself as being a milkmaid to goats.

However, I did dream of having a milk cow for a very, very long time.

Once I realized that goat’s milk tasted just like cow’s milk {this, of course, depends on the type of goat and what they are eating}, milk goats seemed to be the acceptable compromise.

I have been loving these little critters and the wonderful milk I’m getting…two times each day!

My milking stanchion was broken for a while so it wouldn’t hold in Bella’s head.  She would eat her grain while I began milking but when the grain was gone she would pull out her head and nuzzle my neck and nibble on my ear.

This is a very fun and silly picture but I’m so ticklish that it would just make me crazy.

Last week while nibbling on my ear, she managed to slip the back off of my diamond stud.  I had to dig that little golden fleck out of her mouth.  After that she seemed even more and more determined to get it off of my ear.

Silly girl!

I get about 2 cups each time I milk.  Most goats would give more but it’s actually a nice amount for us…for now.

I’ve experimented with making some cheeses. 

We make ice cream on a regular basis. 

I eat yogurt every morning from the milk and I’ve made some soap.

Which reminds me….there’s a give-a-way in the works.

Make sure to head over to my last post, leave a comment there and you’ll be entered in to that give-a-way!

source of photos: Tres Birds Photography

August 16, 2011 Posted by | farm animals, goats, healthy living, home life, in the kitchen, sustainable living | 2 Comments

life on my little {growing} hobby farm…

It’s been such a busy couple of weeks here.  When I was getting ready for my booth at the Farm Chicks show I had to let everything else slide a bit so I could put all of my time and attention into that.  That’s just how it goes and I know that.

I had 10 new chicks {layers} that had to be integrated in with the old chickens.  They had been penned off inside the chicken house for two weeks so they could all get used to each other.  On Monday morning after the show I let them loose.  When I went out a little later, all of the old chickens had pushed their way under the fence and were out in my strawberry patch.   I don’t know how a chicken’s mind {do they have a mind} works but I found it quite funny.

Since that morning, the chickens have all stayed in but have been very bossy with the new chicks.  Slowly they are letting the little ones come outside.

There has definitely been a lot of drama in the hen house!

During this time we have also butchered 27 chickens with the help of my brother and sis-in-law.  That might not be a popular thought with every reader but since we do eat meat in this house it seemed to be a perfect fit with our desire for a sustainable, healthy, farm-to-table way of living.

This was our first time for this and the process was surprisingly smooth and easy.  I wouldn’t want to do it every day but am more than willing to do it again and again.

This sweet pair were in my booth at the sale and because a friend gave them to me for that purpose {saying he didn’t want them back} I am now in a dilemma as to how to make them a part of the flock.  Because of the wee~one, it will take a bit longer.  Right now they get the whole garden to themselves.  They stick pretty close to this horseradish plant but as soon as my strawberries start ripening I’m sure that they will not be welcomed in here any more.

We had a separate little pen for the chickens that are now in the freezer and although a bear cub found it’s way into it for a bit yesterday, it’s nice and big and I think that this hen and her chick will enjoy spending the rest of the summer in there.

So…as our little hobby farm seems to be expanding, it seemed only natural to bring home a couple of goats {in the back of my car}.

I was able to jump right in to milking one {oh, my aching hands} with the intention that the little one will some day also be a milk goat.

They are SO SWEET and lovable and so good with my nieces and although I haven’t let the dog in with them yet, he is very anxious and I think that they will get along fine

When I’m in the pen this little one is always right at my side.

BellaRose & DaisyMae

This does change my life…I told my friend this morning that I can go anywhere I want as long as I’m back in 12 hours!  :)  I have wanted a milk cow for a very long time.  I didn’t envision milk goats but it really is a perfect fit.  I’ve made yogurt, ice cream and ricotta cheese.  It’s all very tasty…no different that cow’s milk…I promise!

June 16, 2011 Posted by | chickens, goats, healthy living, home life, sustainable living | 1 Comment

for the love of goats…

Have you ever milked a goat?
I’ve milked cows a little over the years but never a goat…until this week.

This girl stands ready and waiting.

With a little instruction…

…I take it on like a pro….[maybe not]…

My niece, Lindsey, even jumped in…eventually, with both hands!

It actually looks like I’ll be able to bring this girl home in a week or so.

…along with one of these kids.
Just when my house becomes kid-free, I feel like I need to take on more?…the upside?  I can get rid of this kid if it all goes bad!  :-) 

Isn’t she just the cutest?

I never saw myself owning goats, especially milk goats, but I am just SO excited.

I really love their {very healthy} milk and I’m excited to use it in a variety of ways.

May 19, 2011 Posted by | goats, healthy living, home life, my neck of the woods!, sustainable living | 2 Comments

   

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