My Friend Sal


Sal (center)

Oooh right. I don’t have to use the wheelbarrow, I can do a little off-roading in Sal and get the concrete pretty damn close that way. SO much better. Still very dusty, heavy, and hot. But much faster, and no wheelbarrow-induced meltdowns.  I’m surely not the only person in the world who thinks wheelbarrows are sentient beings with borderline personality disorder. They’re terrorists, don’t try to deny it. If my wheelbarrow had a passport, it would be on its way to South Waziristan to learn how to make IEDs with the Taliban, swear to god. F*ck wheelbarrows!

So thanks, Sal. You’re my man!

Concrete Blonde


Am I really about to do this?

What I mean is, am I really about to cart several hundred pounds of broken up concrete in a wheelbarrow over a hill on a rocky, narrow path and somehow over a set of stairs so that I can use it to build a retaining wall? As much of a heavy-lifting feminist tomboy as I am, I could really use some manflesh right about now. It kills me to admit that, but not as much as it’s about to kill me to do it by myself. Folks, I may be about to transition from scrappy country livin’ to total freaking insanity.

This song seems appropriate. See you on the other side (hopefully).

Hail, Queen Peaches



Meet our new matriarch, Peaches.  We picked her up this afternoon, brought her home, and installed her on her throne. Her response: “Yeah, I got this.”


She so has it. Just a look from her sends the boys into a tizzy.  They don’t know whether to show off, snuggle up, or run away, so they sort of do a little bit of everything.




Once they realized she wasn’t having it, they both climbed into laps (one on mine, one on Gina’s) and pretended they were little babies again, tucking their heads under our arms for reassurance.


Considering how boisterous and silly these guys usually are, their “I’m a little baby goat” routine is pretty hilarious.


Diego chose this position, then pretended to be asleep. I mean, really.

I just put everyone to bed. The barn suddenly seems very small, I hope everyone has a good night!


Dayam! Just after smugly commenting on another blog that I’ve never gotten tomato blight in my garden, I trotted out to do some fussing among the veggies and look what I found:



Blighted! And guess which plant? The heirloom brandywine I started from a seed myself.  I mean are you freaking kidding me?!

Time to get the blaster out again.


Peeeowm peeeowm!

Baking Soda Spray (Treats powdery mildew and other fungus)

  • 1 gallon of water
  • 3 tablespoons of baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon of dishwashing liquid

Mix all the ingredients in a sprayer and apply to leaves of affected. It is best to remove leaves that are seriously infested if possible. Treat every one or two weeks.

Sore Arms and Dirty Feet

Remember the vinca I’ve been trying to exorcise from the slope behind my house? Well ladies and gentlemen, it is officially gone. At least for now. Like other sort of demonic life forms, the vinca is known for being hard to evict once it has taken up residence somewhere. I bet if you looked inside Charles Manson’s head there would be vinca growing in there.

I started last night after work, when the sun had passed over to the other side of the house.


I got pretty far.

But there was still more to do.


Sigh. A lot more.

Today I decided it was time to finish it. I went out there this morning and it was there, laughing at me. It seemed impossible. Just one little me, and all of that evil. I felt like Frodo volunteering to take the ring to Mordor. I was about that excited.

It wasn’t even shady when I started. For about four hours I was hacking away in the midday sun. Essentially I had to remove about 4 inches of topsoil off the entire slope, because it was so matted with vinca roots there was no dirt to shake lose.

Six of these later. . .


And it was finally cleared.


Russian sage planted there in the middle.

I almost didn’t post about this two day project, because, let’s face it, after all that work it still pretty much looks like crap. I wanted to wait until I had a more complete transformation documented, with like flowers and butterflies and whatnot. But dude, that could be months from now.  So you get this crap for now. Whatever. I’m proud of it.

Now time to go soak in some non-zombie inducing bath salts.

Sunshine Award

So I’ve been sitting on this award for a few days but yay! I was nominated for a blog award.

A very big thank you to Farm Girl in Training for the nomination!

You probably know that the award comes with a few requirements. Here they are:

1. Link the award to the person who gave it to me.
2. Answer questions about myself.
3. Nominate 10 bloggers for this award, and link my nominees to the post and comment on their blog, letting them know about the award.

The Questions:
1. Favorite number:  Kind of a silly question, and to be honest, I don’t really have one. I’ve never felt much affinity for the world of numbers in general, however, if forced to choose I guess I would pick 74.
2. Favorite non-alcoholic drink: Coffee, milk, no sugar. That or plain fizzy water, which I am totally addicted to thanks to a Sodastream machine Christmas present.
3. Favorite animal: I’m an all around animal lover, but when it comes to dogs and cats and such, I mostly love MY dog and cat, not ALL dogs and cats. The category of animal I love no matter who it belongs to would be horses. Hands down.
4. Facebook or Twitter? I guess Facebook, since I don’t really even understand what Twitter is.
5. My passion: Cooking is number 1, closely followed by working on my homestead.
6. Favorite day of the week: I do love Fridays in the summertime because if I have friends from the city coming to visit me for the weekend, that’s when they get here.
7. Favorite flower: Easy, lupine. Wild purple lupine that grow on my ranch.

It was very hard to choose nominees because there are many blogs out there I have come across that are worth noting, on the other hand, I know there are so many other great ones I still haven’t found. So this is really more of a sampling than an exhaustive list:

  1. – hilarious, awesome, irreverent organic farming
  2. – the happy progress of a young family farm in Ohio
  3. – organic farming in Arizona, I like this blog because I, too, live in a hot dry climate where growing is difficult
  4. – the greenhorns blog, a must if you are a young farming nerd who wants to stay up to date with the young farming nerd community. Glad to see some Nor Cal farms featured recently!
  5. – a vet student, her goats, and other adventures. Very sweet blog.
  6. – aka Poor Richard’s Almanac, another sweet blog about growing things and life in general.
  7. – making beer and growing things in Chicago, good stuff
  8. – beautiful beekeeping blog – check out the Rome post
  9. – a goatherd in Oregon
  10. – great homesteady blog

Ok, that’s it. Again, please don’t feel left out if you aren’t on this list, keep on blogging!

Feeling Blessed

An incredible, amazing, magical thing has happened. Meet Peaches.


Back when Gina and I first visited the breeder from whom we bought Butter and the boys, this lovely little doe named Peaches charmed our socks off, following us all over the entire farm as we got a tour. The breeder said she wasn’t for sale.  The doe was pregnant, her second freshening.  She threw wonderful kids. Friendly and “very dairy.”  Not for sale.

Today, after weeks of agonizing about how to tell the breeder that little Butter had died, we finally talked to her about it. Not only was she incredibly understanding and compassionate, even telling us about a recent loss of her own, letting us know that these things do happen no matter how experienced and careful you are, she then did something totally incredible.  She gave us Peaches.

Gave us Peaches.

On top of it being such an incredibly generous thing to do, you have no idea how meaningful it is for us. Giving us this doe is like saying: ‘I trust you, you will take good care of her. You are Goat People.’

We will breed Peaches in her next heat and pay the breeding fee. If she throws a doe in November, the breeder might want to take one. Those are the terms. We pick her up this weekend.  I truly cannot believe it.

I am feeling very very blessed.