Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Freebies on the Almost a Farm

I have to admit, I've been a blogger slacker. Well not really, it's just sometimes life is in full bloom and calls for our attention. What have I been up to? Moving horse manure and I don't even have a horse. One of our neighbors posted on freecycle that she had plenty of free composted horse manure. Of course I jumped at the chance. Larry went on Monday morning and loaded our wagon with about 5 yards of free manure for all of our gardens. This was a huge $$ savings for us and I made a great connection to get all the free fertilizer I want. The farm is only 10 minutes away from us so that's even better for gas savings. Thankfully, Larry helped me move the last couple of yards into the gardens-hoo boy were my muscles aching. But I can't wait to see how lush and prosperous my gardens will be. Check with your local farms about free manure for your gardens. Many farms are more than willing to give this away.

A full cart of manure. Would you believe I still have more gardens to take care of? Sue, the owner of the farm told me to call her anytime. Now that's taking care of your community.

After all that hard work, Larry and I settled in for the evening with a nice organic steak. I'll post our meat purchases another time. We found a nice farmers market to buy grass fed beef and other products. These lovely greens however, came straight from my garden. I picked my first crop of lettuce and spinach and made a wonderful salad for dinner.

I ordered 30 pounds of fresh farm raised chicken from a fellow homeschooler. She charged $2.50 a pound and processed the chickens herself. I cooked two of them for dinner the other night. One we ate and the other will become chicken salad and chicken soup. Delicious and I feel better knowing my chicken was not factory raised and pumped full of antibiotics and hormones.

I also grew some Marigolds from seed and transplanted the rest of them into the garden this weekend. The Marigolds and Sunflowers were really the only flowers that did well. All of my other seeding attempts failed miserably because of the downpour rain we had and I ended up buying most of my plants for the vegetable garden. But I'm guessing with the amount that I planted that it will soon pay off too.

I think these are Bachelor's Buttons but aren't they pretty?

The Baptisia is starting to bloom and is a gorgeous violet color. These were free from a friend but beware, they do spread like wildflower.

I have two of these trees. They are called Golden Chain Trees and resemble Wisteria but are yellow. Usually, these are covered with honeybees and the humm is so loud you can hear it from inside. The bark also gets covered with lime green colored lichen and is just as decorative.

Our homeschool group met last week and for the first time this season we were able to sit outside under my beautiful Willow Tree. The kids were busy watching the chickens play.

We shared watermelon and apples and Karyn cut some coupons and Lisa knitted more washcloths. These families have all become my friends and look forward to seeing them every week. The conversation, support and ease of pace is just wonderful.
The kids busied themselves playing all afternoon.

Sweet Willow enjoyed some juicy watermelon.

Gideon contemplated some apples.

Avery enjoyed running with the big kids and eating the watermelon. Our Parents Planning night is this Sunday. No children, just some good food, planning and conversation. I'm so looking forward to it once again.
On Sunday at church, the kids Religious Education classes studied our 7th principle and made all green cleaners. We had a blast with the kids and talked about recycling and how not to use chemical cleaners from the store. The RE team purchased blue buckets and 4 spray bottles and then the kids formed teams to make the cleaners. Each team made a general purpose cleaner, window cleaner, air freshener and floor cleaner.

Celia and Patrick measure out the recipe for the floor cleaner.

The kids and parents sat in Fellowship hall and listened intently on ways to help our Mother Earth. We were so proud of the kids as many are already using green cleaners and recycling.

One of our homeschooling moms Julie brought in her worm composting and showed the kids how to make their own for homemade compost.

When the buckets were completed, we sold them to the congregation for $25.00. All of the 15 buckets sold and the proceeds will be given to the Providence Animal Rescue League, the kids service project for this year. It was a very fun time with them.
I am ever proud of all that they accomplish.


Kate in NJ said...

That is awesome!
I love freecycle!!

homeschool mamma said...

Me too. Freecycle rocks!