Tuesday, June 28, 2011

A Week that Changed my Life

I hope the title of this doesn't scare anybody, but this week really did change my life. As most of you probably know (word travels fast in this family haha), I spent the past week at Anna and Keith's house/farm. Wow, so what a blast! I had the time of my life!!!! :) I learned so much that it would take years to describe, and probably even longer to practice what I learned haha :) To get good at it...ya :)

And...that's it. KIDDING! Here is the play by play of each day...

Got there :)
Helped Tara out with her chicken chores( she is so awesome you guys, like, really...it's a lot of work)
-Collect Chickens
-Get eggs
-Move them
-Move sheep( that was fun...some of the calf's tried to run away)
-Chilled with the family

Got up at 6(wooohhooo I was tired)
Helped Tara take care of chickens
Weeded garden( so beautiful...want one just like it..:)
WATER FIGHTT!!!! Balloons everywhere, and even then, tara was responsible and reminded me to pick up the broken pieces...:) Colten got a hold of the hose...man does he love that thing...tara and I took off running, tried to get him, but I think I got confused...
Shower( never felt so good..warrrmmmm)
Went to town :)
-Weaved a basket! :) Little one...:) Anna helped me a lot with that :)
-Went to library..so, there was a tornado watch, and a girl told us that...HOW NICE :)
-Ate the best pork-chops ever from Hunter's Pigs :) GO HUNTER!!!
*On a side note, I was awake more than asleep...that hadn't happened in over a month!

Woke up at 7
Learned about spelt
made the best pancakes ever...Tara and I got to making fun shapes like turtles...turtles are hard to flip though
Coconut Oil: Good for you :)
Paraphrase of wise Hunter: Every good bread maker has their own score
Did you know gluten is the stuff that makes the dough stretchy? I learned that today!
Made lasagna :D yummmm
Score Bread-prevents break from breaking
Did the chicken chores with Tara
Went to the style show! Tara got a blue ribbon! Her first time! :D
Hunter..he is so sweet. He drew me an elephant :) Best picture I ever saw, and of my favorite animal :) Makes me wanna cry just thinking about it :)

Made caleco beans!! :)
Got up at 7
Learned how to knit!!! Kept adding stitches, but Tara and Anna taught me know to fix them :)
Tara was very kind in telling me the gores of butchering chickens, only she explained it with enthusiasm instead of horror...I wonder about her sometimes :) ( I love you Tara)
Anna taught me not to use plastic because of the lining, so can and glass as much as possible :)
Had califlower broccoli salad :) YUMMMMMMMMMMM!!!!
Man, you know, it gets hot behind the stove. I was a cookin bacon, and by like an hour, I couldn't see a thing! So much respect for those who cook behind a stove a lot...wow...

GOT UP AT 8AM! ( dude, seriously, I thought I was sleeping in...)
WENT TO THE FARM( well, two, one for groceries, one for milk)
-BTW: Raw milk is amazing!!! LOVE IT!!!
-Got coupons from the milk farm :) People are so nice!
-I am in love with Back to the Best :) They have so much!
-Anna bought me Nourishing Traditions, it's awesome! :)
-Got like 50 handouts from Sugar to PMS..:) VERY COOL PLACE

-We let out the cows!!!! Coool :) It looked revolutionary and beautiful :)

-We made meatloaf :)
-Made granola...could have eaten the whole pan haha
Learned how to make butter!
Learned how to sharpen knives :) It was REALLY fun, scary as that sounds :)

started at 9am, ended around 6 pm...got a video of the whole thing...I think I can still eat chicken? :)

I had to leave :(
Had blueberry french toast for lunch!

*You guys, I am in love with how Anna and Keith live...each member of the family does something to contribute, and everyone is always on watch of each other, taking care of each other. Everybody has to make sacrifices, whethor it be their own dreams or anothers, and at least while I was there, it seemed like every day everyone put themselves aside in order to take care of the family....all the time. And not once did I hear Anna or Keith yell...it was so cool :) And Hunter, Tara, Colten, and Abigail are so amazing! They know so much, and have taught me so many things :) I was in shock at how much they knew :)
I mean, sure, I could have done away with Tara not asking me if I was having fun, every twenty minutes, or Colten spraying the hose at us while we are doing chores haha...but it just wouldn't be the same.
The best part was that it was all based on living in the image of God, and God was always apparent in and out of the house :)
Really guys, my eyes were opened to how things should work, how they do work, and how to live in the real world...
now, I see food, and I see yellow cheese and I'm like "hey, cheese isn't supposed to be yellow! ( did you know that? They die the cheeses)..eww!
I see meat, and I ask myself, how was the cattle raised? Was the pasture changed often? Did they get enough sun? Did the grass have a lot clovers, which increases its likelihood of getting bloat?
-Why didn't people think about what the Homestead Act would do to the cattle/farmers?
-Why can't markets sell raw milk? It's good for you, and people can get sick on anything, so why ban raw milk specifically?

In other words guys, my world is flipped, and I wanna keep it that way :)
My mom and I are trying to cook some of the things I learned how to/did make at Anna's. It's a little crazy, because it's hard to find things like spelt or rapadura not at a farm, but I think we will just make time to go Back to the Best :)

Words cannot explain how thankful I am for Anna,Keith, Hunter, Colten( dude has so much energy!), Tara, and Abigail :) You guys, I admire you so much, and thank you for all that you do :) I love you all :)

-P.S. I apologize for bringing so much technology, I realize we really don't need it...yes, I know, I am using right now, but I mean the Itouch...what you guys are doing will last much longer than the Itouch will..)

-Side Note: I taught them the game Crazy 8's...we played it every day like 4 times :) It's one way to learn :)

God Bless
Lexi Holland

Saturday, June 4, 2011

How does your garden grow?

So, it's quite a change moving from the country/rural area and being used to a 2400 sq ft garden to a two bedroom upper apartment in the city with a balcony :) But, I've managed to find a way to still grow a few of my favorites thanks to a farming family with an ample supply of Mineral Containers, some rabbit manure compost, 3 bushels of soil purchased from Big Sky Greenhouse (near Randolph), and lots of recyclables (used to minimize the amount of soil used and, of course, to cut down the weight of each pot!). My family (and my boss) often remind me that their gardens could use some assistance, too, if my two small containers don't cure my itching-to-play-in-dirt hands :) I just love watching little new things grow.

Container #1: Tomato, Lettuce, and Zinnias


Container #2: Cucumbers, Carrots, and Zinnias


My small sunflowers. I can't wait for them to bloom. Too bad it won't be for another 3-4 weeks

Enjoy the beautiful warm weather, it sure does make those new plants pop real fast :)
(Even though I would be perfectly content with low-mid 70s and little humidity, my plants say no!)