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Tuesday, October 11, 2016

It's Fall on the Farm!

I'm sitting in my recliner...yawing, and it's only 9pm but I'm so tired.  Fall is such a busy time of year that it seems there are far more things to accomplish than there are hours in the day or days in the week!   Long winter days inside are starting to sound like a vacation!

Mr. Ripley believes he should be part of every adventure.  My daughter, Laura, and I were suddenly overtaken by the need to 'Fall clean' the house.  Included in that endeavor has been all kinds of odd sorting through things and disposing thereof.

We went through a couple boxes of fabric scraps...
Much to Ripley's delight....

We have a solitary grapevine on the garden fence.  My son planted it 10 or 15 years ago and the most it has ever produced was a box or two of grapes.  This year has been a phenomenal fruit year and we harvested 6 big boxes of purple grapes for juice and jelly!  It's all canned and tucked away in the cellar.
The apple harvest is still booming and we've already canned many half gallons of cider, quarts of apple pie filling, pints of applesauce & apple butter....made pies and dried apples in the dehydrator.  The goats, rabbits and two young steers have enjoyed apples, too. We've given apples away and still they continue to drop from the trees!

We had a cider-making potluck party with a group of friends and sent them all home with jugs of the fruits of their labors!

Today I picked a box of Jonagolds and one of Libertys to store in the outside fridge.  I tasted my way through our 20 year old orchard.  We planted it when we first bought this land and we are definitely reaping our reward in harvest this year!
Apple pie filling day was much more fun this year as we made it a group effort with friends.  Many hands make the work light and with all those hands peeling, coring, slicing, stirring, filling and canning, we managed 100 quarts of pie filling that day!  We'll all be eating good this winter for sure!
Our Country Chicks Craft Fair on Sept 30th & Oct 1st were a rousing success!  We doubled our profits this time and enjoyed it a lot.  Our vendor space is coming together nicely now, so future shows should be quicker and easier to put together.

Many long hours of crafting were represented in my shelves & bins at the show.  This buzzard was one of a kind and didn't last long.

 Since it's a Fall show, besides some of my all-season items I made quite a few Halloween items, too.

Our next show is only about 7 or 8 weeks away and it's a Christmas show.  I've already started on a dozen Old Worlde Santas and some little snowmen,  Lots of work to do to be ready, and of course we still have things to can!

 As we picked them earlier in the season, I put the pie cherries, berries for jams, cranberries and other things in the freezer to can later.  Now that we're close to hunting season, I'll have to get the freezer cleaned out soon as my DH insists that he's going to get an elk this year and I"ll need to have space in the freezer to store it.  I figure I can wait until I actually see it hanging before I get too worried!
 The urge to clean house is keeping me entertained with things like going through closets, boxes & dressers and sending things to Goodwill and I'm anxious to keep working through it and hopefully go into the Winter less cluttered and in a much more orderly and organized fashion!  Wish me luck!

Well, the garden is finished for the year, other than mowing the remaining vegetation down and trimming back the raspberries.  I've closed some of the windows in the rabbit house and we've combined the young and old chicken flocks.  Four of the goats will head off to the auction, the haying equipment will be moved under cover and the porches de-cluttered and ready for Fall & Winter winds and rain.

This morning we had the first frost of the season and a fire in the cookstove.  The sun came out later and it was warm enough to open the windows once again, but the weather forecast is calling for winds & rain for the next few days so it's time to fill the wood box and get the kindling chopped.  Soon the sunshine will be gone for good.

Mr. Ripley is growing and learning how best to torment Maddie the chihuahua.  He appears out of nowhere and then disappears just as fast,  but can usually be found if you put out a box or basket.
My older daughter and I are part of a $5 Quilt Club that meets once a month for a year.  We've done it in the past and are enjoying it once again.  Here's the first block in my quilt.  Every block will be shades of red.

My son & younger daughter and I were talking at
the dining room table yesterday afternoon.  It was sunny and pleasant, about 3pm in the afternoon, when something hit the screen of the sliding door.  It was a little black bat.  He stayed clinging to the screen for about 15 or 20 minutes and then suddenly flew off again.  It's very strange for a bat to fly in the daylight and we wondered if he was disturbed from his hiding place by something or if he was ill.

This is just a smattering of what we've been up to on the hilltop and there's still much to do before the farm can sleep for the winter.  What a blessing it is to have such a bountiful harvest!


  1. What a great read! You inspire me to do like you do but on a much smaller scale....say 2/3 of an acre.
    Mom and I love the apples and have been enjoying them....because of your generosity.
    Looking forward to my next visit on The Farm!

  2. As usual, I am exhausted just reading about all of your activities!

  3. Thank you for stopping by my blog and leaving such a sweet comment about my mom, I couldn't personally email you since it was under a no reply blogger. I am so sorry about your mom too. Love all of your creations, you sure are one busy gal. hugs, Lecia