Out the Front Door

Snapshots and snippets of the beautiful, crazy world right out our front door.

If you’d like to share some of your own photos or a blog post, please leave a link in the comments!

Tomatoes2

Tomatoes1

One of the best parts of living in Missouri is that food just grows and grows! (Well, there are pest problems of course, but the hot days and warm nights contribute to abundant harvests). We are trying our best to take advantage of the local bounty by gleaning and buying in bulk, and preserving or storing for the winter.

We went to the local university farm last week and gleaned these gorgeous paste tomatoes.  I believe the variety is “Striped Roman.”  They are meaty, huge, and made amazing tomato sauce.  This huge pile boiled down to 8 quart jars and one large pot of pasta sauce!

Pond1

I’ve been enjoying the last days of swimming in this beautiful pond.  We have yet to have a frost, so the pond remains warm enough for quick swims (and baths), even in October!

MessyHouse

I’m kind of cheating, because this photo is technically “In” the front door, but I wanted to share a photo of the BEFORE, as we move everything out of the house in preparation for wiring, insulation, and installing our wood stove.

For the next three weeks, we will be house-sitting at a friend’s house and taking care of her gorgeous Belgian horse, Solomon.  We’ll continue to go to the land each day to work and play, but staying elsewhere will enable us to really focus on the house for the coming weeks, as cold weather is coming!

What’s happening outside your front door?

Out the Front Door

Snapshots and snippets of the beautiful, crazy world right out our front door.
If you’d like to share some of your own photos or a blog post,
please leave a link in the comments!

Chickens

Chickens free range the property.  One of our year-old White Rocks, Broody, hatched a chick last week – our first farm-raised animal!  A few of the spring chicks are laying, giving us 2-3 eggs per day.  It’s so nice to once again eat our own eggs!

Lemonade-Stand

Ella’s first lemonade stand.  As she is very eager to have a horse, I suggested she start finding ways to earn money to care for said horse. Ella’s stand was “pay what you wish”, and she made over $6 towards her horse fund!  Her lemonade, enjoyed here by our neighbors Julia and Beth, was made with lemons from Grandma and Grandpa in Arizona, honey brought from our homestead in Oregon, and lots of ice (perfect for yesterday’s extreme heat!).  TentTrailerGoodbye

Before we left for California, we packed up the tent trailer and moved into a nice spacious 7 person tent.  The tent trailer was such a wonderful place to live for a few months, and we were so grateful for the loan.  The tent has been very breezy and cozy.

 

Out the Front Door :: Melons

Snapshots and snippets of the beautiful, crazy world right out our front door.
If you’d like to share some of your own photos or a blog post,
please leave a link in the comments!

Melons1

Everett holds our first Prescott Fond Blanc Melon (above and below)

Melons2 Melons3

Banana melon really does look and taste like a banana! 

Do you grow melons?  If so, you probably can relate to the absolute wonder of walking out into your garden, picking a ripe melon, and letting its warm, sweet juice drip down your chin and fingers.

My garden in Oregon did not get full sun exposure because we lived in a narrow valley.  Plus, a year-round creek flowed through our backyard, making the garden micro-climate a bit cooler than our neighbors up the hill.  Melons and other hot weather crops were a real challenge to grow.  I was able to grow extremely small, short season cantaloupe in the greenhouse, which were certainly delicious, but not abundant.

I was so excited to try a variety of heirloom melons this summer.  The hot days and moderate nights, humidity, and full sun make for great melon growing conditions.  I selected over a dozen varieties from Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds, and off they grew.

Selecting a ripe melon is still not something I excel at (for instance, the Prescott Fond Blanc above was a tad bit underripe), but my general understanding is that a ripe melon should be fragrant, the base should have a little “give” when pressed with your fingers, and the melon should slip easily from the vine.  The Banana melon grew to its enormous size within the first month, then sat there, unchanging for weeks, while I wondered when in the world it would be ripe. Suddenly, the color began to change from a light green to a light yellow, and finally to a bright yellow. The stem began to separate from the fruit, and a heavenly scent was noticeable.  In two days, it was ready to pick!

Next year, one of my goals is to create a larger space dedicated to melons.  I am hooked!

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What is happening out your front door?  Do share below!

Out the Front Door

Snapshots of the beautiful, crazy world right out our front door.
If you’d like to share some of your own photos, please leave a link in the comments!

FirstEggs

First Dozen!  When five out of ten of our spring chicks turned out to be roosters, we went back to the local hatchery for some older chicks, and came home with two (already laying) year-old White Rocks. After a two-week adjustment period, they resumed laying, and we’ve been happily collecting two eggs per day ever since!  Last night, one decided to get all broody on that day’s eggs, and Ella is really hoping for chicks.

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PreservingCorn

Some days, you just have to go with the flow (and I wonder why it’s so hard for me to make a “schedule”!). When our Amish neighbor Jacob dropped by in the morning, asking us if we wanted to buy sweet corn, how could we refuse?  Six dozen ears, and four hours later, I had prepared 8 quarts of corn for the freezer.

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FloorInsulation

Rigid foam insulation!  A new friend at Red Earth Farms Community Land Trust hooked us up with this (free!) reclaimed foam insulation for the living room and bedroom areas.  What a gift!  It has since been covered with local cottonwood sub-floor (full update next week).  With Brian’s dad here for a visit, work is going doubly fast, and for this we are so grateful!

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What is happening out your front door?

Out the Front Door: Chicken Love

Snapshots of the beautiful, crazy world right out our front door.  If you’d like to share some of your own photos, please leave a link in the comments! 

Chicken1 Chicken2

After months of living a small cardboard box and chicken tractor, our chickens are finally free ranging.  It is so nice to have their presence on the land and to benefit from their tick-eating!  The kids are completely enthralled, watching “chicken TV” for hours, holding them gently in their laps, and feeding them from their hands. Our little piece of land is slowly becoming a homestead.

Out the Front Door

 Join me in celebrating the beautiful, crazy, messy life that happens right outside our front door: Post a link to a moment you’d like to share in the comments below,
or share it on the Homestead Honey Facebook page.
13-58EggsinNest

*** We’re moving on to the land tomorrow – for real this time!  I need a bit of extra energy focused on setting up our kitchen and sleeping space, so I’m going to take a few days away from this space.  Wishing you a wonderful beginning to your week!  – Teri

 

Out the Front Door

There is just so much going on outside our front door right now. Red bud and apple trees bursting into bloom, outdoor kitchen areas taking shape, gardens growing bit by bit, native trees planted.  It’s almost too much to even try to capture in words, but sometimes a photo captures a moment in time so precious…

So, following in the footsteps of the many other bloggers who have pioneered the “wordless post,” I’m going to periodically share what is going on right outside my door.  Join me if you’d like: post a link to a moment you’d like to share in the comments below, or share it on my Facebook page.  Let’s all celebrate the beautiful, crazy, messy life that happens right outside our doors.

BigDat