Monday, August 29, 2011


Zinnia's - they have to be my favorite garden flowers. You drop the seeds, sprinkle some loose soil, water and forget about them. They are almost 5 feet tall right now. They boarder my garden plot and look just amazing. They bloom all summer long and have enough to share bouquet after bouquet. I also plant marigold from seed. I like flowers that have extremely low maintenance. If you forget to water or the weather isn't cooperating, they don't mind.

Beautiful weather in Chicagoland today. High was about 79 and it's just about as perfect as it can get.

Farm visits are going to continue next month. Keep checking back.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011


Onions! They are getting so big. The green tops are now almost all brown and should be ready to pick any day now. I read to place them in pantyhose then dry them that way. Sounds easy but I don't have a garage so they will be in my spare bedroom. HA HA - which I'm sure will smell like onions for awhile.

Friday I'm planning on a major garden cleaning. Need to get rid of all the overgrown plants and clean it up. Still have a lot of tomatoes but almost everything is finished. I want to plant Winter Wheat that will come up in the spring. Just a few rows. I should have room to produce a bag of flour. I read a book that the man said "I Grow Pancakes". Nice. We'll see.

Thank you.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Mice on Etsy

Catnip Mice - now on Etsy.
Willow loves these little guys. They are cotton tees that are stuffed full of 100% organic catnip grown in the garden. The strong smell drives her crazy. She dragged the prototype all over the house.

I'm adding some more wonderful things for the house on the shop later today. Stop by anytime.

Etsy is Open

My Etsy Shop is OPEN!

I am adding things each day. So far I have 4 items. Click here to access my page.

I'm so excited. I opened my Etsy account in 2007 - around Christmas time. I made a few Santa Elves to test the site. I think my photos were poor and descriptions hasty. No nibbles. Which is fine. My friends received some cute felted elves for Christmas.

This time around, I'm going to sell something. I have a purpose for my shop now. The Farm. All sales go into the account.

One last thing - we cancelled the goat farm tour. Thursday I emailed the farm. She was a sweetie. I can't wait to see the place. But I thought I'd give Bobby a break from too many tours. Good thing too as Saturday was rainy and nasty weather for a farm tour.


Thursday, August 18, 2011

Ottawa Review

Farmstand! How cute is that?

My evaluation of the Ottawa Sustainable farm is that it was a little messy. The farm had 85+ acres. Most was pasture that was not currently in use. Just blank acres that I just about cried cause nothing was growing. I guess the 7 cows they had could feed and the chickens in their little "Free Range" cages could but it was missing something. Why not grow corn or wheat? They were currently selling Chicken and eggs. Taking the broilers to a butcher and then selling them on a CSA program BUT they didn't have any pigs and I'm not sure on the cows. Maybe they too were sent to a butcher. Little confusing.

We enjoyed the tour but again, it was messy. Over 500 chickens - the egg layers - had free range of EVERYTHING. They were in the truck bed, all over the house yard, in the drive way - just everywhere. Because they had unlimited access - they pecked the yard clean. I mean clean. Down to the dirt. Now, I have never had my own chickens but others I have seen, have the chickens at least confined to a fenced off area so the house yard at least looks neat and tidy. My thoughts are that if you are giving tours, shouldn't your entrance look inviting? Shouldn't you plant maybe a pot of flowers? Maybe that's just me. I clean my house before company comes over.

None the less. I learned about "Free Range Chickens". Those that were sold for meat were held in large cages. Not over crowded and yes, they had access to grass but they were kept inside to keep the muscles tender. Are we all eating chickens with weak muscles? I guess I never knew that. Hmmm. What would the happy hen that was a layer taste like? Too tuff from exercise? That's why I want a Farm. I want to taste a happy hen. Not one that's in a cage. Even if they are outside, does a large open air cage constitute Free Range? Not sure.

Money for the farm is my main project now. I'm working on the donation site. I should be able to add it to my site soon. Also maybe a fundraiser. I'm even thinking about a reality show. Wouldn't that be a hoot? The whole process on maybe the Discovery Channel. Thinking about it.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Cedar Valley Sustainable

We drove to Ottawa yesterday to visit a sustainable farm. The day was beautiful and the country side breathtaking with farms dotting the landscape.

I'll post my evaluations later.

Thursday, August 4, 2011


August! Wow what a fast summer. One more month.

We have two farm tours this month. One in Ottawa, IL at a full CSA and another at a meat goat farm. We've also applied to work part-time up the road at the vegetable farm but he hasn't called yet.

Moving along.