The family on Cedar Lane Farm

The family on Cedar Lane Farm
These are the people I love! That's my sweet mama in the middle. I wonder what she's thinking.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011


This dog!  This misfit cross-bred dog!  Oh how I love him.  *sigh*  But, he's still a DOG!  Dogs make messes!  This is the same dog that ate a pound of ground beef that I had browned, drained, cooled (on the counter) and saved for another meal.......while I was feeding the chickens one evening.  You'd think I would learn!

Tonight after returning home from work, having dinner, cleaning up the supper dishes, I decided it was time to clean out the refrigerator.   I do this about once a year (wink) and thought it was the perfect time to do it.  When I clean the fridge, I go shelf by shelf, emptying the mystery contents of each tupperware bowl into a large garbage bowl to go to the chickens. 

Tonight, we had molded jello, roast from who knows when, old yucky pickles (and the juice), molded mac & cheese, half-eaten yogurt cup and some leftover green beans.  All of this once-wonderful food was piled into the garbage bowl on the counter.  Then,...................someone drives down the driveway.................I go out to greet them............I'm out there five, ten minutes being cordial..............finish the conversation...........return to my kitchen. 

The end of this story is this.  Niko, who now smells like pickles and jello got into trouble (use your vivid imagination here), went to time out (his kennel).  I got to spend 30 minutes cleaning up my floor.    The good news?  My fridge is clean and so is the floor.  The bad news?  Use your imagination again.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Keeping cool on a Hot Summer day!

Keeping farm animals cool in weather like this (100 degrees +) is difficult.  My Jersey cow, Cinnamon, looks for shade, manure piles, the best breeze.  The past week has been brutal on her.  This morning, while watering my garden, I noticed Cinnamon hanging around the sprinkler.  I got close to it and realized that the cool mist, along with a gentle breeze, was refreshing her senses!  So, when my garden was nice and watered, I moved the sprinkler over by her favorite shady spot and turned it on!  She hesitated for a second, and then just stood there, basking in the coolness of the experience. 

I set her up 30 minutes ago, and she hasn't moved a muscle.  I think she deserves that sprinkler for a while anyway, considering all the love she gives to us every morning at 7:00 am.  The weather is supposed to "give" in a day or so, and I'll pamper my sweet cow til then. 

Niko, on the other hand, is having no trouble staying cool.  He's in the house, every day, napping away in the 75 degree A/C.  What a life!

Take care of yourselves during this hot time of year.  Think snow!  Then, slap yourself really fast! 


Wednesday, July 20, 2011

The Harvest...coming soon.

I'm on vacation this week.  I tried to plan this week off to coincide with the harvesting of the garden vegetables.  Well, it's Wednesday, and it's slowly coming together.

I'm getting a handful of okra each day, and when I have enough for a canning, I'll have those pickled okra on my shelf as well.   This year was our first try at okra.  To my surprise, it's gorgeous!

Isn't Okra a cool vegetable?  Look how it grows!  Always clean.

The jalepeno peppers (which I use in my Rotel recipe) are being so productive, they are weighing my plants down!  I'm very happy with this crop too!


Now, my tomatoes are my prize crop!  I have nearly 25 plants in the garden.  The majority of them are Roma, as I can lots of spaghetti sauce, tomato sauce, salsa and "rotel" tomatoes.  My plants are completely covered with tomatoes, but they're still all green.  I hope that they ripen while I'm on vacation, because this crop takes most of my time to store.  Take a gander at these puppies!  They're so nice this year. 

So, in the meantime........while I wait for my favorite crop to ripen, the cucumbers have my attention.  Yesterday, I picked about 25 cucumbers and canned the pickles.  I used the Mrs. Wages, polish dill pickles envelope from the local grocer.  They turned out nice.  What do you think?

I hope your garden is blessing you with a lot of good, wholesome food for your family.  I'll share the "rotel" recipe if any of you are interested.  Just leave me a comment!


Thursday, July 14, 2011


It's happening.  Right before my eyes.  My children are growing up and moving on to adulthood.  It's exciting and sad (for me) all at the same time.  Becky will be moving into her own place, in a little town about 30 minutes away from us.  And next month, she will begin her career as a high school English teacher.  The kids that she will have in her classroom don't know it yet, but they are going to love their new teacher. 

So, early on Saturday morning, Becky and her daddy will be traveling to purchase some gently used livingroom furniture that she found on eBay.  Then, they will deliver it and set it up in the new place.  I will do my best to let her put things where she wants them. :)   This is a big step and an exciting time for her, so I want her to enjoy this!

I'll try not to cry.  But, no promises.


Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Strawberry syrup!

One of my favorite magazines in recent years is "Backwoods Home".  Jackie Clay writes several articles in each and every issue and has published several books on canning and gardening.  I have to say that I'm a proud owner of her book entitled Growing and Canning your own Food as well as her very new The Pantry Cookbook.  I have tried so many recipes of hers, and I've yet to have one that I don't like.  The latest idea from Jackie is strawberry syrup.  Jackie writes about it in this month's magazine, but doesn't give a recipe.  All she says is, "it's basically just jelly without the pectin". 

So, I googled it and found something with only strawberries, water and sugar!  Tomorrow morning.......pancakes and strawberry syrup!  Maybe I"ll try peach syrup next!

Growing and Canning Your Own Food by Jackie Clay'Visit:          Jackie Clay's Pantry Cookbook


Wednesday, July 6, 2011


The beginning of July through mid August is prime peach season here in Central Missouri.  In recent years, I've driven nearly 2 hours to pick my own peaches right from the orchard.  Now, we have a couple of older gentlemen in our community who do the driving and bring them right to Main Street!  So, I buy from them and save my gas money!  They're not as big as "my" orchard peaches were, but they're just as delicious.

This is a great start to my canned peaches.  When this photo was taken, they were one day away from being ripe enough to slice and can.  I got 12 pints out of these, and I'd like to have twice as many more!  We eat these peaches all year long.  They are so delicious right from the can at dinner, in a fruit salad or in a fresh breakfast quick bread.  Best of all, I know what is in that can when I pop open the lid.  That's why canning your own food is so satisfying. 

This is just the beginning of this year's canning season.  My green beans are days away, my tomato plants are full of green tomatoes and the corn is close to tassle.  With my "luck", it'll all come ripe and ready the same week!  But, that's's all going to taste so good this winter and beyond. 

Friday, July 1, 2011

Number three

This is Kelly, recently turned 16, recently got her drivers license....hasn't recently cleaned her room.  She is the most independent child I have....bull-headed is a better adjective.  But, she is also beginning to experience compassion for others.  Kelly just returned from a mission trip this summer.  During the trip, she  got to see human situations that are not familiar to her.  Kelly is a very fortunate girl.  I think she is beginning to realize that. 

 Her friends mean the world to her.  Her siblings mean more.  I have no doubt that Kelly is in the process of leaving the child behind and becoming a beautiful, caring, loving, compassionate young woman.  This is her in all her cuteness.  I think she's beginning to like me, too.  :)