Yesterday was Esther’s birthday, and she requested hamburgers for supper. We happened to find a recipe for Homemade Hamburger Buns on a blog, so decided to try it out. They turned out to be easy and delicious–the best homemade hamburger buns I’ve ever had! We did use some white flour in them, due to a misunderstanding about which bag of flour to use.
We decided that today was the day to bring the cow home. She’s been in a neighbor’s paddock, about 600 meters (a little over 1/3 mile) down the road. They had grass going to waste and offered it to us. About six weeks ago we put the cow and her grown calf down there, and have been walking down to check on them a few times a week. The past week, we’ve checked on them every day, as she is getting closer to her due date. Well, that day is tomorrow, and she’s looking close! This afternoon, after school was finished and house was cleaned up, the whole crew went with me to fetch Chestnut. She’s very calm, and leads extremely well, especially considering how wild she was when we first got her a little over a year ago! Now, she’s trying to figure out where her daughter is, just wandering around the enclosure we put her in. We’re hoping for a new calf tomorrow or the next day!
I love having all my helpers around–but it’s awfully nice to have peace and quiet at times, too! This morning, Joe got up at 5:00 when I was packing Gayle’s lunch. I don’t blame him; the bedrooms are totally unheated and not much warmer than the wintry out-of-doors; he probably got cold when I left the bed. He went back to sleep on the couch, though, pretty soon, and I had an hour and a half alone. After my quiet time, exercises, hanging laundry in the living room, and computer time while brushing my hair, I was actually able to get three items off the mending pile, and have a bit of time with Elijah, who likes to get up at 6:30-7:00. Now it’s time to get everyone else up and get on with our busy, noisy, (hopefully) productive day!
On our way home from church today, we stopped along the coast to fill our jugs with seawater (we evaporate it on the woodstove to make salt). The waves were wild today, so it was challenging to get the water.
I got soaked when a particularly large one caught me by surprise.
He wanted me to take a picture of this special rock.
After the jugs were full, I got in the van to try to warm up, but Gayle and the boys walked around and explored the area a bit. Several of my boys brought me beautiful little flowers–I have no idea what they are.
After awhile, Gayle came back saying, “You really have to come see this!” So, Esther and I went where they were. We were surprised–there were seals (New Zealand Fur Seals) all over on the other side of the rocks from where we had been getting water!
We also got to watch some swimming in the waves.
The sun came out just as we were leaving.
The activity this afternoon was dicing and bottling carrots. I like to have carrots in jars, ready to dump into soups or casseroles, so when I go to town I often buy a 10- or 20-kilo bag of carrot seconds, then fill jars with them and process for 25 minutes at 10 pounds pressure in the pressure cooker. This morning, Esther and I peeled what was left in the 10-kilo bag we got a couple of weeks ago (I had already used several handfuls). This afternoon, I got started dicing them and had Elijah find lids for the jars. Seth wanted to help, so he filled jars, and then Simon and Elijah started cutting them up, too. James got in on the act before we were done, as well. Seth filled the jars with water for me and put on the lids. I just remembered that we didn’t make sure the rims were clean. Oh, well. If they don’t seal, I need carrots for soup tomorrow anyway. It was a lovely time of working together happily! Gayle was in the kitchen, too; he was preparing some pig’s heads for cooking into brawn (like headcheese). We decided that wasn’t too photogenic, though.