The Frugal Witch

June 19, 2008

Meet the Goats and New Chickens

Filed under: chickens, farm, Food, frugal living, goat milk, goats, no gmo, organic, organic livestock — Tags: , , , , , , — Womon in the Woods @ 3:55 pm

Pippen-Alpine Billy-rather bashful

Brandon-Boer Billy

Tulip-Alpine Nanny

White Legs-Alpine Nanny-She doesn’t have white legs

Fresh goat milk

Rob milking on the stanchion he built from just a peek at a picture in an old book. I think he did a fantastic job!

Black Jap Roosters- I have never heard of  this breed. Anyone have a link on any info?

A random bantam breed. The gal I got them from couldn’t remember the name of the breed but they are pure bred. Any ideas? I am going to do a search tonight.

Ant these three fellas get the ax tonight.

Off to buy freezer paper. As soon as I get videos loaded I’ll post those too!

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May 31, 2008

The Raised Beds

Here are the promised photos. You’ll have to visit my flickr to see the notes on the photo of the entire spread of the yard garden.

More photos in a couple days of bunnies, and goats and progress on the goat fencing that is getting finished tomorrow since storms rolled through today.

BABIES!!!!!!

Filed under: farm, farm babies, frugal living, organic, rabbits — Tags: , , , — Womon in the Woods @ 6:47 pm

Delilah had her babes sometime last night. Her litter had seven but two didn’t make it. It’s so neat to see the little pink wiggly babies!

Some in the nest…

Some out of the nest…

And the proud mama!

I’ll take video in a couple of days. Presently, mama is a little jittery upon opening the hutch, so I’ll leave the little family alone for a couple of days.

Living REALLY Frugal

Filed under: frugal living — Tags: — Womon in the Woods @ 6:30 pm

Vanessa and Dan are great friends of ours. In fact, they are getting married on July 12th and Rob and I are officiating their nuptials! Recently they purchased a tipi and set to putting it up on a great piece of land his parents gave them to live on. Today our first visit was made.

Once the summer weather passes us by they have plans for insulating the floor from the ground, for now there are a couple of rugs here and there on top of some tarpaulins. It’s really very cozy and lovely. I am so thrilled for them!

May 20, 2008

Backyard Bounty

There is more food in your backyard-even if you don’t plant a garden, and provided you have herbicide and pesticided the crap out of your environment-than you may realize. In the three years that this has been our home, I have successfully identified over 50 edibles growing in the forest and grassy spaces-free of chemicals, nurtured by Mother Nature Herself.

In the video in the last post I mentioned these things: Dandelions, Sorrel, Nettle, New Jersey Tea (Buckthorn) and Violets. Here are some links to some great sites offering info on the crafting, foraging and eating of the delish bounty the EARTH provides free of charge! How is that for frugal living?

The University of Minnesota

Abundantly Wild

Do It Green

Edible Plants

Those are just a couple of sites. If you did a Google search, I am sure that you can come up with any number of sites, and you can cater the search to your state or region of the country. In the next couple of weeks, the fiddle head ferns shall appear and boy oh boy are they going to be tasty!

Eat your weeds!

A short video on a few nearby wild edibles. Next post I’ll have a few recipes and some great wild harvest sites.

May 5, 2008

Frugal, Fast, Organic Fare

Filed under: CSA, Food, frugal living, home life, Homekeeping, organic — Tags: , , , , — Womon in the Woods @ 8:08 pm

I try my best to prepare food here that is good for us all, organic or most components organic and best of all fast to prepare. There isn’t a lot of time here for putzing around in the kitchen, not when there are 2 small children, animals, a husband a garden, sewing, crafting, laundry powder to mix, candles and soap to make, etc.

Rob and I are members of 2 vital elements to our household food sources. There is an organic CSA up in walker that thankfully delivers by us each week for $25. Granted right now the fare isn’t local but soon enough there shall be local food to be had in addition to the food grown in our gardens.

The other source is a buying club affiliated with a natural and organic foods distributor. Our foods are purchased in bulk at an incredible savings. For example, here is the list of one of our last three orders through the buying club:

2229 Ambassador Hairbrushes® Hair Brush oval shape nat bris
FOR REGULAR TO THIN HAIR
1/1brush 1 Case 0.89 14.57
6580 Ambrosia Milk Chocolate Chips 1/5# 1 Case 17.63
14068 Amy’s Kitchen Breakfast Burrito ND 12/6oz 6 Eaches 15.78
14740 Amy’s Kitchen Breakfast Patties 12/8oz 3 Eaches 13.86
14768 Amy’s Kitchen Spinach Pizza Snacks 12/6oz 3 Eaches 11.31
2250 Amy’s Kitchen Strawberry Toaster Pops 12/11.6oz 3 Eaches 10.80
14760 Amy’s Kitchen Vegetable Lasagna 12/9.5oz 3 Eaches 13.86
2193 Amy’s Kitchen Vegetable Pot Pie Organic 12/7.5oz 9 Eaches 25.02
13857 Annie’s Homegrown Arthur Loops Tomat & Chese OG 12/15oz can 1 Case 23.66
4925 Annie’s Homegrown Cheddar Bunnies Baked Crackers
made with Organic flour
12/7.5oz 1 Case 4.43 27.22
13888 Annie’s Homegrown Chocolate Bunnie Grahams
made with organic wheat flour
12/7.5oz 1 Case 4.43 27.22
13818 Annie’s Homegrown Mac & Cheese, Creamy Deluxe 12/12oz Temporarily out of stock
13859 Annie’s Homegrown P’sghetti loops Soy Meat Balls 12/15oz can 1 Case 23.66
18110 Annie’s Naturals® Ketchup, Organic Squeeze GF 12/24oz 3 Eaches 9.00
5688 Bob’s Red Mill Baking Powder 4/16oz 1 Case 11.04
5696 Bob’s Red Mill Brown Rice Flour SG GF 4/24oz Temporarily out of stock
5661 Bob’s Red Mill Couscous Golden 4/24oz 2 Cases 24.54
5945 Bob’s Red Mill Flax Seed Meal 4/32oz Temporarily out of stock
5984 Bob’s Red Mill Oatmeal Scottish 4/20oz Temporarily out of stock
10173 Cascadian Farm Orange Juice Concentrate OG 12/12oz 1 Case 38.76
4419 Coconut Coconut Med Shred Unsul 1/5# 1 Case 9.93
3401 Eastwind Almond Butter Smooth NS 12/16oz 1 Each 8.47
12822 Eastwind Peanut Butter Smooth NS OG 6/5# 1 Each 17.68
5050 Great River Unbl Wheat Flour OG 1/50# 1 Case 42.43
7104 Health Valley Vegetable Broth FF Aseptic 12/32oz 1 Case 36.84
5837 Lundberg White Basmati OG 1/25# 1 Case 44.22
17892 Midwest Northern Trail Mix Raw NS 1/5# 1 Case 19.38
17101 Muir Glen Chnky Tom w/Herb Pasta SauceOG 12/26oz 9 Eaches 30.89
19421 Muir Glen Classic Minestrone OG Soup 12/19oz 6 Eaches 18.24
5362 Natural Value Green Lentils OG 1/5# 3 Cases 23.58
12946 Natures Bakery Cooperative™ Six Grain Granola 10/1# 4 Eaches 15.60
13039 New Century Farms Brown Eggs lrg OG1 Grade A 8/12ct Temporarily out of stock
10002 Organic Valley Butter No Salt Organic 15/1# 3 Eaches 20.07
7745 Organic Valley Half & Half Ultra Past OG 12/32oz 1 Each 0.42 3.76
18025 Peace Coffee French Roast Whole Bean 1/1# 2 Cases 20.44
4786 Raisins Raisins Golden Fancy 5# 1 Case 12.71
19071 Smile Brite Double Tip Replaceable Head X Soft Natul 1/1 brush 2 Cases 0.34 5.58
19072 Smile Brite Double Tip T-Brush Head Refil X Soft Natr 1/3 heads 2 Cases 0.39 6.35
1411 Westby Cottage Cheese 2% rBGH Free 12/24oz 2 Eaches 8.94
15028 White Wave Tofu, Extra Firm Style 6/12oz 3 Eaches 6.12
4355 Wholesome Sweeteners Cane Sugar Organic K GF 1/25# Temporarily out of stock
Invoice Summary
Product Total Shipping Charges Sales Taxes Freight Equity Club Charges Total Invoice
657.54 0.00 1.62 0.00 0.00 0.00 659.16

The bulk purchase and minimal tax (Minnesota has no tax on foodstuffs) helps a frugal family out! This is a number of months of food on this order! Granted some of it is convenience food, but it’s organic and healthier than the convenience food in a conventional form. I go to the grocery store for fresh things only, and generally those items mean things like milk and yogurt even though I an get it through the buying club. I have more of a savings at the grocery store considering the rate my family drinks milk (not much for cow milk as the girls are soy babies.)

One more outlet Rob and I are looking into is over at my favorite place on the net, MaryJanes Farm. She has this most delicious product called Budget Mix. Think of Bisquick but good for you. It can be purchased in bulk quantities and is perfect for the nights I don’t *really* have the time to make something.

Tonight’s meal was made using the Bakeover recipe. I made the Bakeover part more like biscuits because the dish I made was a little bigger, I really should have doubled the recipe for the Bakeover crust.

Here is what I did:

cooked up some lean ground beef (I am normally a veg. and cook for the family veg. but I’m pregnant and I crave red meat…strange, I know…) then chopped up three of our potatos from our CSA share this week along with some garlic from a share a couple of weeks ago, an onion and some cream of broccoli soup. I made the biscuits, put them on top and baked according to the Bakeover directions. I figure this dish- which will be another meal tomorrow- cost about $5-6 to make total and took about 35 minutes to make. FRUGAL! CHEAP! FAST! NUTRITIOUS! EASY! ORGANIC!

I added to the meal a nice Ceasar salad using all organic produce gotten in our CSA share. The salad cost more than the meat dish! But, it too shall feed us again tomorrow.

A food photographer I am not, but these look pretty tasty don’t they!?

This morning I made sticky buns using the Budget Mix and there are still some left for breakfast tomorrow. There are about a billion and one things one can make using this great item so I think I’m surely going to order it in bulk. They carry trial sizes too, for those of you not sold just yet. There is also a special edition of Mary Jane’s magazine that focuses JUST on recipes using the Budget Mix and the Chillover Powder (gelatin that’s not gelatin!!) It’s definitely worth checking out if you are in a similar boat as we are here.

Dinner was satisfying, great tasting and good for us all tonight and I spent almost no time or effort to make it that way.

Ta ta till next time!

MAKE-OVER!!!

You’ll notice that the previous posts have been removed. I am giving this blog a makeover. As Rob and I are both at home working, doing our farm building, self sustaining action, etc. this blog is going to chronicle our weekly, sometimes daily goings on in building our life in the manner we see the world around us. I’ll be posting about everything from our rabbit adventures, our organic market gardens, the chicks I have hatching as I type this post, kids growing up in the forest, butchering animals, foraging for wild foods (we have an abundance in our forests!) frugal living in our menus, etc. etc. I may even throw in a video or two from time to time. Such as this afternoon. I am going out today to take video of our 5 rabbits to introduce them to you, take you on a tour of the chicken coop, a bit of video of Rob putting in the raised beds and a bit of video of the chicks we hatched from our birds.

A little about our chickens. So far the birds we have procured have been gotten for free off of Freecycle from a lady who needed to be rid of them as she couldn’t take care of them anymore. There were 2 that had been purchased for $5 each from a local organic farmer and one hen that I had rescued from a fellow farmgirl. So all told our flock consisted of 18. After one has been butchered and 2 escaped and got eaten by someone else, now 15 remain. Eggs have been gathered from them to hatch in still air incubators and some have been left to be hen hatched. So far 4 have hatched. One pipped but died so there could have been 5. I think there are 6 more of our birds to hatch out.

So after getting into the hatching game, a bug seriously bit us both. Online I ventured to find some pure breeds. I ended up getting Plymouth Barred Rock, Red Dorking Bantam, Silkies, Buttercups and Black Langshans. Those eggs are all still in the incubators and all here are thrilled for them to hatch. As they are our pure breeds, we plan to build separate living spaces for them from our mutt chickens. Three of our mutt chickens, a roo and 2 hens are going as homewarming gifts to some friends of ours who just put up and moved into a tipi. Sort of a get you started small flock.

The pure breeds that had been chosen were chosen because of their beautiful show qualities, some of them are pretty docile and some of them are super broody. All are good meat and egg birds, sans the bantams as they have tiny eggs.

So join us on our frugal life adventure! Feel free to leave comments, opinions, recommendations, etc. If you have a frugal living, farm living, organic living blog, a pagan farm blog, business or whathaveyou, let me know and I’ll link it.

One last venture for our farm life that I am working on is a podcast of farm living. That is a few weeks out yet though….but keep your eyes and ears open!

Spring is here and there is a lot to do….off to make a couple of videos for your enjoyment!!

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