Archive for October, 2010

Sisters Roberts… Just a Couple of Hermits

During the month of October, Angela and I have been house- and chicken- and cat-sitting at the Genesee Valley Daoist Hermitage while the directors Charlotte and Da Jin Sun are in China. Our duties pretty much include feeding the chickens and collecting eggs, feeding the cats and practicing our Chinese cooking skillz. There are still lots of things in the garden that we’ve been eating like zucchini, cucumbers, wolf berries, amaranth, basil, onions, potatoes and tomatoes.

Unfortunately we both became horribly ill about a week and a half ago. We languished at death’s door for days, barely able to drag our ghostly selves to the fridge, the chicken house and the cat litter box each day. Desperate for some glimmer of entertainment, we deliriously watched DVD titles scrounged from the hermitage basement like Disney’s Cinderella II and possibly one of the worst affronts to cinema ever created, What Dreams May Come, in which Robin Williams dies in a horrible accident only to discover that his daughter is residing in Heaven but has transformed from a white 10-year-old girl into a hot Asian flight attendant.

Since we started feeling better (today) we’ve had some exciting times here on the farm. Why, just this morning one of the chickens got loose and we chased it helter-skelter though the yard for a good 2 to 3 minutes. Ha ha, yes we young people are always up to some crazy shenanigans.

Well, dear readers, I hope you are looking forward to the next installment of Glamor and Drama from the hermitage as much as I am.

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Backyard manicure

Lately we’ve been hauling in bark as a way to combat mud and weeds. It looks nice, too.

You can see the driveway that will provide access for the pickup. When we settle upon the landscape design we’ll install pavers as borders and gravel the driveway. The cultivated area on the right is new and I’ll plant squashes there next season.

The area in the foreground will be the official melon bed. Chickens, black beans for drying, and popcorn in the background.

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Our first egg!!

On 9/27 we awoke to a huge commotion down in the House of Omelettes. It was about 3 a.m. At 6:00 I went down to see if someone was dying. No, they all came running to greet me as usual. As soon as I left, tho, the noise began again with the addition of a distinct sighing/groaning sound coming from one hen. Finally, a few hours later (!) there was silence. By this time, I was a wreck. I ran down to see, and sure enough, there was this perfect little brown egg in a nest box.

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Jim’s Year Round Produce

We visited Jim, one of our favorite food sources, on his Idaho farm near Juliaetta. We picked tomatoes for canning, and got a grand tour of his impressive operation. Just when we were getting discouraged from the non-stop work, Jim inspired us again. I guess some of his high energy rubbed off on us!

Jim Maxwell is a vendor at the Moscow Farmers’ Market. This photo is taken from a back field and looks down upon his greenhouse and roadside stand. Master gardener, ambitious, visionary, he grows the tastiest, sweetest watermelon in the world!

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Love these Romanescas!

These zucchinis are wonderful. Tasty, abundant and pretty. I love slicing them into coins for stir-fry and pickles.

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It was a really long day…

After 42 quarts of pears, plus pear butter and “pears porto”, we were wiped out. Pears have to be peeled and cored, unlike most other fruits.

Scary. He’s better off outside. We’re all better off if he’s outside.

Tired puppy.

Hello????

Grandma worked hardest of all.

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We’re Done With Corn, But We’re Still Corny

We got a fair amount of corn this year, but it was a little weird. There were quite a few deformed ears or ones without a whole lot of kernels on them, just like they were part of the family. It tasted good though and we froze some of it.

Cutting the corn off the cob

Ok, time to put down the corn and pick up a hairbrush.

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