Jun 17

View From My Window – Old Goat

6.Allie strawberriesOur namesake goat, Alabu ( Allie) is getting older. This past May she just turned 12. Nubian goats, (her breed) have a usual life span of 10 to 14 years, so she is definitely getting up there. We notice she doesn’t shed out to a sleek smooth coat in the spring like she used to and it takes a little extra to keep her at a good weight.

She doesn’t like goat feed that you can buy at the farm store, but she will eat some black sunflower seeds and she devours drench. Dench is liquid vitamins for goats. You usually give them after they give birth but I have started giving her a little every day. She also gets supplemented with stuff from the kitchen and the garden. I recently found out she loves strawberries. I have 150 plants and lots that aren’t really worth eating because they are super tiny , deformed or bug eaten. I had been saving them for the chickens but now they go to Allie.

Here is an interesting thing about old goats, they don’t know they are old. They really don’t slow down. I still look out the window and see she is up on her hind legs butting heads with Midnight. She runs up the hill to me when I call her and still acts like a kid ( pun untended )! She is very bonded to our pony Caddy, but very jealous of her people spending time with him instead of her. Whatever care Caddy is getting she tries to get in the middle and get it for herself.

The other day our grand daughter Miss Number Two was watching me do my morning barn chores. I put fly spray on Allie, just because Caddy had it and she wanted it too. Miss Number Two said, ” Grammy you sure do take good care of your animals!” Well I’m glad she thinks so and I hope she learns to treat everyone that way.

May 17

Many Hands…little hands

vacuumMy mom used to say ” Many hands make light work”.  I remember she often said this when we would help her can the bushels of tomatoes that came from our garden at the end of the summer.  When I had my own children I read if you don’t let your toddlers “help” you with chores around the house, they won’t want to when they are old enough to really help. So even though it always took longer to do chores with a toddler, I considered it an investment in the future. My future, that eventually they would be capable of helping with chores and their future, that they would become productive adults that have learned that work is part of life.

I know my kids heard ” Many hands make light work” a lot growing up too. I always let them “help” with dishes and cleaning and of course canning too. When they were 7 and 10 we moved to a small farm. Then there was lots of opportunity to work together.  We did a market garden and our young daughter did most of the planting without complaint. Now we have grandchildren, six so far! Last time Mr. Number Three was here, at the tender age of 4 years old, he came into my office and announced my kitchen floor was dirty. He sheepishly looked at me and asked if he can use my vacuum. It makes my heart glad to see our kids families carrying on the tradition of ” Many hands make light work”.

May 17



Cucumber skin care? I always plant cucumbers in my garden. This wonderful veggie is full of good nutrients for your face from the inside and out. It is a good source of Vitamin C and Molybdenum; both nutrients can help detoxify your skin and make it smooth and beautiful. But don’t stop there cucumber has topical skincare benefits too. It contains caffeic acid, to help to reduce inflamed or irritated skin, and it also hydrates due to its high water content. The peel has silica, which can help firm up sagging skin. Even people with the most sensitive skin types can use cucumber.

A quick fix for puffy eyes: place chilled cucumber slices over your eyes. You’ve probably seen this before—because it really works!  Enjoy the cooling effect that helps relieve puffy eyes, and shrink dilated blood vessels. Cucumbers also have flavonoids and antioxidants that decrease swelling, redness and irritation

Redness: Cucumbers have natural anti-inflamatory properties like water, potassium, Vit A and sulfate that calm and soothe your skin. You can place thin sliced cucumbers anywhere there is redness. Great to soothe sunburn, rash or rosacea flare ups. Keep the slices on for at least 15 minutes. Remove and apply a light moisturizer like Replenish ( Shhh…we don’t sell it but we love Emu oil for burns)

Spa Facial: Lightly puree 1/2 cup of cucumber and mix 1 to 2 tablespoons plain yogurt (look for one with active cultures). If it is too runny you can add a little oatmeal. Gently apply to clean dry face and neck. Relax for 15 to 20 minutes and rinse and enjoy your new glowing skin.


May 17

View From My Window – Springing Into New Life

Spring is all about new life. It is such a wonderful time of year here in the northeast. After a long and often gloomy Winter, Spring is here to lift our spirits. Of course the weather is always unpredictable, (well actually it is unpredictable here all year longBaby Boone) but it has so much promise bursting forth from the ground to the trees. The renewal of life and new life is all around us. Dean and I are busy with new gardening ideas and every Spring there always seems to be one more garden expansion.  This Spring there was a different kind of one more expansion that added more love to our family. We got to welcome a new baby boy into the family. Our son and his wife had a beautiful baby boy, Boone McKinley added to their family. The middle name honors Papa (Dean) who climbed Mt. Mckinley 40 years ago. I’m sure this little man and his big sister will have lots of adventures of their own ( I think I heard someone talking about his first camping trip). We are so happy for them.

Mar 17

We are honored to be featured again in “Life As I See It’ By Gail Welter

Gail is a gifted photographer. She came to visit us back in August of 2015. She recently featured us again at her blog, that you can see herewelter