Saturday, May 15, 2010

Little This Little That

Sometimes that is all I got. A little this and a little that. 

This summer Bangor, Maine is having a street market downtown on Thursdays from 5-8pm.  I have decided that this will be the first market that I will sell my soap, lotion, bath salts,and eggs. I am apprehensive about this. I know the items are a good quality and people really like them. I guess all firsts are kind of scary.  Well, that said, I have to have a tax number.  We have the necessary LLC and Federal number,however, Maine wants it’s cut too.  Thank goodness Maine has these forms online. What a great thing! Now I just wait.


I have been thinking.  It’s painful but I do have to keep the old gears in working order. I wanted to make a kitchen soap. I thought that coffee would be an excellent scent. Last week I got to work.  I used coffee as the water part of my soap, I had ordered coffee scent (it’s difficult to find for cold process soap)oil, and I mixed coffee grounds into the soap.  After it was poured into the mold I sprinkled coffee grounds on top.  After it set up I cut the bars and I am very pleased with the outcome.  It does have a slight mocha scent to it.  Any ideas out there for names? 


I received a very nice letter from a lady in Port Charlotte, Florida.  She said that she had been up to Maine at her sisters house and had used my lotion.  She forgot to save the bottle and as circumstances happened her sister had passed. She was up in Maine visiting her mom and she was given a bar of my soap as a gift. She wanted a brochure to order more soap and lotion.  I just had to call her.  Seems her sister and I worked at Eastern Maine Medical Center together and she had bought my soap. I remembered her and loved her dearly. It is truly a small world.


Alex and I had visited a neighbor about buying her llama and a angora/cashmere. Sadly she had sold both this winter. It seems that she has switched over to horses. I just don’t get it.  Anyhow, she lent us her drum carder for wool. Now we have to get picking, washing and drying to see how this turns out. 


We had our first fiddleheads of the season. I love these asparagus like ferns.  I guess I have truly embraced Maine.


I tried an experiment last night.  Each night we put the kids into their creep separating them from their mothers.  That way I can milk in the morning and let them nurse the rest of the day.  We both are happy.  We haven’t noticed them nursing much.  Isabella and Carina move away from the kids when they try to nurse. Kind of like self weaning them.  I had the bright idea of leaving them out last night to see just how much they are still nursing.  Well…..a lot! Here is the amount of milk I got from both goats combined this morning.


This is what I normally get in the morning. Well, I guess the kids are back in the creep tonight. Sorry guys.


Well that is about all the this and that for now.  Hope everyone has a wonderful day and what is your this and that?

Much Love and Prayers from Mainely Ewes Farm.  Kelly

Friday, May 14, 2010

Our Mornings Start Like This

This is a favorite toy of Emma and Lucy. We tried the single tennis ball but there is a problem. When you are a litter mate everything has to come in twos. The girls are very close and love to do everything together.  Let me show you what I mean.


You have to run together……


get to the toy at the same time…


Bring it back together…..


a mouth on each tennis ball…..


that’s it.  TOGETHER!


There is the time, after about the 50th throw that one gets a little tired.


After about the 53rd throw, Emma just sits and waits for Lucy to go and bring it back.


Both girls agree that a cool dip in the pool is a lovely end to a game of fetch first thing in the morning.


That is until Emma pees in the pool. After all they are Labs. Some things never change. We hope you have a happy day. Just remember, never and I mean NEVER swim in the pool after Emma gets a drink of water.

Much Love and Prayers from a wet Mainely Ewes Farm. Kelly

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Goat Milk Fudge

Okay, we have goat milk. Goat milk frozen for soap, goat milk for drinking, goat milk for neighbors. You name it. We use it in cooking. It makes a wonderful mac and cheese. We needed something sweet. I know that has to be a need. I went online and to one of my favorite sites, Fias Co Farm. That site it a wealth of information on goats. This is the best fudge recipe that I could find. I made one change. I love pecans. I am from the south and that is our tree nut of choice.


4 cups of sugar and 9 Tbs of cocoa


2 Tbs of corn syrup


1 1/2 cups goat milk (fresh from this mornings milking)


stirring gently


heating over medium heat while stirring gently


Continue cooking and stirring occasionally over medium low heat until it reaches 234 degrees


Remove from heat and add 1 stick butter. Not margarine! Butter! (Ode to Paula Deen here) Do not stir. Remove from heat and let cool to 150 degrees without stirring. Do you know how hard it is to let this just sit and not stir? Oh, the urge to stir is so great.


Okay, add 2 tsp vanilla and 1/4 tsp salt and stir until the butter incorporates into the mixture. The smell at this point is so yummy. It brings in Ted from the other room.


Stir vigorously until the fudge thickens and looses it’s gloss. Butter an 8x8 pan.


Pour the fudge into the pan and let cool.


The finished product is so rich and creamy.


I had to fight Alex over this spatula. She fought a hard battle. She should be awarded something for her loss….


Okay, she gets to clean the pot. 


It turned out so nice that I made an additional batch to take to work tonight for some lucky nurses in the ICU.  We need to develop some kind of scratch-n-sniff application on the computer.

Happy Fudgeing! Much Love and Prayers from Mainely Ewes Farm.  Kelly

Kitchen Flooring

I think this picture says it all. We have been living in a half finished kitchen. Looking back we have come so far.  We can really see progress in the house. It is difficult to spread ourselves between the house and farm.  This floor had been partially installed by the previous owner. No grout. Nada.  The tiles would occasionally pop up by themselves.  We made due. Enough of making due. We want floors. 


We had to use a cement type of filler to make the floor even.  The missing tiles would cause problems when we put the laminate flooring in.  Ted mixing the leveler. I tried this and it ain’t fun!


Finally, the sub flooring can go down. 1/2 inch plywood to even things out.  We were so happy to have some areas where the whole sheet would fit in without cuts.


It took small cuts and pieces to fit into the edges. Surprise! Our kitchen isn’t square. Whahahhahahah……..  Hey, it was a barn. Honestly, the kitchen was the barn at one time.


It is terrible to say but, the subflooring looks better than the original floor ever did.


The office even looks better.


The mud room looks nice. See this shop vac.  We have used it as our main vacuum cleaner since we moved in. Oh, the joy of being able to use a Swifter.  Sweet anticipation.


It took 3 days work to get to this point but here we are.  The Pergo flooring is going down.  We chose Pergo because of the pups, mud, farm life coming inside and it is sturdy. Welcome Potomac Hickory. We love you.


Nothing is easy. Each piece has to be hand cut next to the door. Like I said, nothing is square.


Snap, click, tap. That is our song.


The office is looking good. Alex waits for us to get there. After a bit your knees and back refuse to go on.


Whoo Hoo! The office is done. Ain’t she pretty?


Southside of the kitchen complete captain.


We have finished the kitchen. Working now on the 6” baseboards and black kick plate under the cabinets.  I will post the finished photos in a couple of days.  It is so exciting. I can’t wait to show you our new complete kitchen. Okay, now the other floors have to get done. But wait, we need to put 3 new pastures in for the sheep and goats. Time and money. That is what we need.

Much Love and Prayers from the ever changing Mainely Ewes Farm.  Kelly

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Next Year We Will Shear Our Own Sheep!

And goats and llama. Actually anything that needs to be shorn, we will do it ourselves.  I understand that Icelandic sheep aren’t your ordinary sheep. I also understand that there are people who have never seen an Icelandic sheep. However, if you can’t shear my sheep without #1 cutting them and making them bleed, #2 make them look like a blind, angry, leprechaun on crack sheared them, then don’t. I know Icelandic sheep are not your everyday docile sheep. They have the instinct to run away from the unknown like no other sheep that I have seen. It is a survival instinct that they have. They will not lie on their back while the shearer works. They will bolt at the first chance. Don’t get mad at my sheep. It really pisses me off. Just tell me “I don’t want to shear your stupid  and unruly sheep, or I hate your sheep and never want to see them again”.  Any of the above will work.

The goats were first, not too bad. They are easier to get along with.


They behaved themselves, much better than I expected.


Then it was the sheeps’ turn. He started with Emily.




This is Emily after the debacle. She is embarrassed. She said that he was a “mad man”.


I know that I am new to this shepherding thing. I also know that the sheep aren’t suppose to look like they have mange.


I am so sorry Cierra. Please forgive me.


Esther had a lot to say about the situation. Loosely translated from Icelandic sheep to human: “If you ever want to see your children you will never allow that human in my pasture or barn ever again. I will dismember you and bury you under the apple trees”.  After that she gave an evil laugh and smiled at the camera. I am truly afraid.


Fuzzy was so upset that she is hiding in the shelter behind the hay rack.


Never again! We will be purchasing the shearers and commence on doing this ourselves. The sheep, goats and llama voted. All were in favor of the farm mama’s doing the shearing. There you go, Democracy in action.

I have one last question. What do we do with 12 bags of wool that has been chopped beyond recognition? Sheezzz….

Much Love and Prayers from Mainely Ewes Farm