Friday, April 6, 2018

Places we will be this weekend...........Smithfield Farmers Market and Riverview Village Days Plus Some Baby Goats and Wildflowers

Hello everyone well it has been spring break all week and we had big plans......but you know how they can change in the blink of an eye. We have been cleaning up the limbs still from the March first Northeaster and Dusty had several ticks on him and of course one attached under his arm. Well Tuesday night he developed a "really bad headache" and then a fever......of course being a mom to nine kids and spending most of the years without any health just don't run to the doc, you use all the home remedies and old school ways to relieve symptoms and "HEAL" and as nurse I also "know too much" you know the old saying "what you don't know won't hurt you, and what you do will." Well of course I got worried about the tick I took him to the doctor on Wednesday and they ran some labs...and really no meds and all the labs came back normal and we would be waiting until Monday or Tuesday for the "tick borne" labs. He has been sick all week and he feels better during the day as long as you keep some children's Motrin in him. He was able to ride his scooter on Monday and Tuesday have bonfires at night and cook hotdogs on the fire, but it can really suck for a child to be on spring and be sick. My poor baby.......but as Dusty told the doctor he wasn't the baby of the family......I looked at him funny "what" then who is Dusty????? He said Ledger!!! LOL. Dusty he is your nephew and our grandson.....then I told him you might not be a baby but you are my baby! So its been a super busy week...well did you expect anything else???? LOL
We had more baby goats born and of course the bottling continues...the high tunnel preps and the greenhouse still full and growing. Still milking......which never stops...and of course we did extract honey late one night. 
Saturday is calling for rain and a sleet snow mix......really April and on coastal North Carolina yeah I'm still running heaters in the greenhouse at night but that is always expected. So IDK how this will go for tomorrow but I do plan on being at Smithfield Farmers Market tomorrow from 9-12 noon. So everyone think "NO RAIN" tomorrow morning and maybe it won't rain! 
April 7 Smithfield Farmers Market from 9-12 noon 

I have decided to attend the Riverview Village Market on the 2nd and 4th Sundays starting this I told David the manager I was a little worried to attend more than one day a week even though its only two days a month mostly.....sigh I did this before (not Riverview) but attended more than one market a week and I tell you...then you can't be a farmer.....unless you have tons of help and can leave others to do your jobs. So this will be a new experiment for me this I will try again....yes I do need the money and YES most defiantly I want to do the best job I we shall see how my new adventure goes. Because to me Sunday is a day of rest or a day you want to just EASE into the day.  

Of course I made kombucha again this week and I tell you it took me all day pretty much 10 hours to make the teas and bottle the rest and transfer scobys etc.....its worth it totally as I tell you my husband Bruce really loves it! It is just soooo yummy..... if you want to see my recipe and how I do it go 

this time I did grape and pineapple I got way more bottles I just needed to get them put up and out of the way for each batch, the hooch tops are the grape and the flag are the pineapple

This is catnip which has stayed alive all year in the high tunnel and now is flourishing 

The radishes are really growing and all the water lines are in and ready to go 

The seedlings are doing well in the greenhouse looking forward to going outside in the high tunnel
Early jalapenos I grew from seed....lots of them I will bring some to sell at the market
Some of the tomatoes growing 

the okra 

               Bruce built me more boxes this year so I am excited for that. See all the waterlines in
                                            The high tunnel is all ready now
                                                                    More of the boxes

One of the baby goats born this week 

Welcome little one 

My wildflower seeds came this week for the bees this year I ordered 5lbs which let me tell you is expensive, we had such awesome luck with the wildflowers last year we wanted to plant more for the bees plus its great ground cover and BEAUIFUL plus other pollinators love it too. 
These are some of the wildflowers we grew last year 

The field was loaded with flowers and you cans see the hive bodies behind the field 

Butterflies love them too 

of course the bees absolutely love them!! 

See all the hove boxes behind the flowers 

A friend of ours let us use his homemade extractor and it has helped out so much as we were doing four frames at a time with another borrowed extractor this extractor is automatic and holds ten frames plus you don't have t flip the frames each time! 

The uncapping tank 

Bruce uncapping the frames to extract the honey note all the hive body boxes in the background each needs to be extracted and full of frames full of honey, I know always too much to do 

uncapping the frames of honey 

the frame totally uncapped  
See the honey draining through the screen 

Coming out of the extractor 

You can see some of the BEE POST 



This is Milly who now has a new home and look at that SPOILED 

                                    Milly and Violet in their onesies and diapers #GOATLOVE
Bruce found this adorable turtle in the high tunnel of course I put him or her under the greenhouse for shade and plenty to eat 

You see how tiny it is 
I will be at both of these events coming up so please note that 

Well remember hope for no rain least not at market time. Enjoy your weekend I am off to replant some more in the greenhouse and paint some more hive body boxes and then make some strawberry jalapeno as per request. Hope to see you this weekend. 
Until next week! 
Dawn Gallop

Sunday, April 1, 2018

Happy Easter 2018 and April Fool's Day and Happenings

Happy Easter!!! April Fools Day too! Tomorrow my oldest daughter will be 29 years Alexis said too close to 30. I can hardly believe she is going to be 29....Happy Birthday Alexis!!!  We have been super busy bottle feeding kid goats and of course milking goats. Seems like April and May and September and October are the BUSIEST times of the year on a farm. April and May you have seedlings, plantings, birthing, MORE eggs from the chickens, school projects, changes in the laundry from having both seasons of clothes at the same time, being cold in the morning and warm by the afternoon. Time to open the hives, getting ready to get bee packages, splitting colonies, setting up new hive body boxes, hive body painting contest time, the end of the cold weather crops like kale, collards, and broccoli, cabbage......and making sauerkraut, freezing the kale, the collards and broccoli for the summer and fall. Strawberry season, then blackberry season. Yard clean up time from the winter and building new garden I said April and May the busiest. July here is also a very busy month for canning, from potatoes to tomatoes, blueberries to figs. September and October are also among the busiest of the year.  Of course in all these times I am also getting ready for markets, shows, etc..... but like Bruce says I wouldn't have it anyway. Although sometimes I just need a BREAK!  Or even just the pressures of not having deadlines and so much to do. 
Oh its tick season too which is always a time to be alert as we spend a lot of time outside. 

As I said before the high tunnel is ready for planting Bruce has been hooking up the water lines, and he has built me more planting boxes. 
The radishes are up 

These are the radishes in the planting boxes 

This Easter morning we took a morning hike in Millpond which is always beautiful and I tell it just renews the soul. 
Since I spend a lot time hiking well at least when I can I see all the changes in the trees, the water, the plants.....which all are so amazing....we are all so blessed to live on such an amazing planet. 

Saturday was an excellent beautiful day at the market....we have all welcomed new market vendors into our market family and of course always love to see new people at the market. I had a lot of the regulars, and new customers. It always make me soooo super duper happy when they buy on of my art bags....which I know I don't get a lot done much anymore...but I tell you with all of my work I put my heART into whatever it is.......whether painting, soaping, jamming, or just growing seedlings. Everything does well with LOVE! 

At the Smithfield Farmers Market Saturday the Smithfield "Pig" showed up for Easter, handed out Easter ears, and little pigs. 

At the market when the pig showed up 

of course it was cold at the beginning of the market thank goodness we had our Mr. Heater to keep us warm because believe it or not it is cold under the tents. 

The Smithfield Farmers Market Pig 

These are the little "bunny honey" pots my aunt brought for me to sell they are so adorable. It was a great Easter Market 

the baby goats have been having a ball running and jumping as you can see in the pasture all the branches and tree limbs as we lost several trees in the beginning of March for that Northeaster which was on a Friday and I have yet told that story....Colten has been using the chainsaw cutting up all the limbs and branches and then burning the pile at night while all the goats are put up for the night. 
This was in 2016 when one of my favorite little girls at the market bought one of my painted bags. She still comes today and is always talks to me and tells me new stuff, she even bought one of my journals. I tell her she's one of my biggest fans. Her my has really supported us over the years....THANK YOU!  This year makes our fourth season at Smithfield Farmers Market. 

Of course for Easter the boys always like to dye eggs I set them outside so they don't make a mess as boys will be boys and of course it was to nice of day, you can see our chickens and coop in the background  

Cooper and Dusty dye eggs for Easter 

Easter egg dying with boys is always FUN......its best to be outside, LOL! 

 Who needs Easter baskets when you have farm baskets, which actually are our egg gathering baskets
More pics of the soap curing 

Bee frames as these couple of days have been nice enough to check the hives 

A collage of the happenings bee frames full of honey and bee two excellent things to see this time of year, the garden cart I have had since like 1995 I repainted with that plastic paint you buy at  Lowe's and more frames building for the bees as this time of year you have to be ready for the nectar flow 

This weekend coming up we will be the Smithfield Farmers Market from 9-12 noon in Smithfield Virginia 

I hope everyone had an awesome Easter, my aunt came out and I baked her a Smithfield honey glazed ham per her request....and of course the boys LOVED it. I also made mashed potatoes, and cornbread, collards and for dessert they all ate some of their Easter candy which I only bought a little. My neighbor Linda brought me over a money plant of a Jade plant and my aunt brought me a flag with a bee on it for my greenhouse flag holder. This week I am hoping to get more planting done and get some of the hive bodies painted for the new packages coming soon. The boys are SPRING BREAK! They are super excited about it. Have a great week!
Dawn Gallop 

Alexis just sent me these adorable pics of Ledger with his Easter bunny 

Ledge with his Easter basket....his first Easter! Happy Easter Ledger!! 

                 Also don't forget the classes at Wine and Cake Hobbies in Norfolk Virginia
April 17, 2018 is the first one coming up. I have an aged cheese to share and some other cheese recipes. Come join us if you can. 

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