Welcome to our 1864 farmhouse…life is good!

Monday, October 29

simple country pleasures...

October...my favorite month of the year! Filled with brilliant shades of dusky bronze, mustard yellow, russet red, and deep burgundy. A bundle of Indian corn hangs as a harvest greeting on our farmhouse door, a tower of plump pumpkins are stacked in the urns that once held pretty pink begonias, and piles of leaves are everywhere. I love the sound of fall leaves crunching underfoot...it's the only sound to be heard early in the morning as I go outside to greet chickens and goats...who, by the way, are sleeping in just a bit longer on these gray, cool mornings.

In the evenings we can hear the call of a Great Horned Owl in the distance. If all goes as it does each year, any time now he (or she) will move into the tall pine tree in our front yard...owls calling to one another late at night make for a perfectly eerie Halloween feel.

And oh, it's time for pumpkin patches...I mean look at this!


Can you blame me for pulling the truck right in to check it out?!

There were oodles and oodles of pumpkins...

Look how clever...a round hay bale wrapped in orange plastic and painted to look like a pumpkin (check out the log on top to resemble a stem!)

and of course, as promised - pigs!

Little ones that given half a chance would have made their way home with us!

And see that little sign off to the right?  Directly under it is a Mason jar to drop money in. I absolutely love that...an honesty jar. It just doesn't get any better than that...call me old-fashioned.

A family farm, overflowing with pumpkins, and they invite passers-by to just pull in, greet the little pigs, choose a favorite pumpkin, and drop money in the jar.

Yep, call this Heartland farmgirl old-fashioned...that's just fine.

Thursday, October 11

wise words...

If you haven't yet heard of Tasha Tudor, just click here and get to know her...what an inspiration to live simply and enjoy the sweet every day moments. I've read her books and been captivated by her way of life for years...she's the one who inspired me to roast turkeys in an old-fashioned tin kitchen before a crackling fire (it truly tastes wonderful!), to appreciate the
"rustle" of the gingham ruffle on a full-length pinafore apron, and it was Tasha who first introduced me to Nubian goats...ahhh, those adorable long ears!

Tasha was described as "fiercely independent" (hmmm, I was once described as that; still makes me laugh!) and a woman with a simple life and a sprawling garden. 

Mother Earth News said of her: "She wears her long frocks, petticoats, aprons, lacy kerchiefs, and handknit shawls with an unconscious grace, as if she truly lived 150 years earlier.  Her days unfold with a gentle rhythm, from earliest light when she sets out barefoot to milk her goats until she settles in the parlor by the fireplace with a cup of chamomile tea at nightfall."

I like the sound of that, "a gentle rhythm" it sounds peaceful in today's often frenetic world.

I'm going to plant an herbal tea garden next spring...so when the days grow short and the winter winds blow, I can sit by the fireplace at the end of my day and enjoy a cup of tea.

Tuesday, October 2

Look at this tomato!

This week I'm putting the garden to bed for winter...harvesting, tilling, and adding compost...where did the summer go? (Although with temps in the upper 90's
and high humidity all summer long, I have to admit I'm ready for fall and winter.
Bring on the sweaters!)

In the next few days the last of our garden veggies will become pasta sauce and salsa to enjoy when the frosty winds blow and we need a little reminder of what a REAL summertime tomato tastes like. And if you're looking for a new recipe for keeping summer in a jar, try this one for Oven Roasted Tomato Sauce. We think it's really good and it's super simple to make.

And so today, in my salute to REAL tomatoes, I have to share a photo. When I saw this tomato, it practically jumped out at me and cried, "I'm perfect for a BLT!"  I mean look at it, one slice will cover an entire sandwich!

2-1/2 pounds of glorious tomato that's 4-1/2 inches across

...I almost hate to slice it!

Guess what's on the dinner menu this week? Yep...definitely BLT's and BLAT's (slices of avocado added, mmm). I can taste it now on home-baked sourdough bread. I may just have to try my hand at homemade mayonnaise, too...this tomato deserves the best!

And no, this beauty didn't come from my garden, I found it at a little farmers' market at the edge of town. Ahhh, but a girl can dream, I'm definitely going to ask what variety it is and add it to my own garden next year!

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