Friday, May 31, 2013

very Brady

The pristine 1970s vinyl flooring on my basement stairs - look at the gloss!  That's real gold trim.

Thursday, May 30, 2013

little surprise

One of the hens laid a tiny white egg.  Tiny eggs are sometimes known as witch eggs or fairy eggs.

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Memorial Day

Detroit dog cousin Ceasar prancercising my way

Detroit dog cousin Kelly gets Cozy in a double underhook mat slam


Nothing says Memorial Day like durian

Monday, May 27, 2013

Spring magic at Holman farm

Bestie Laurie in front of her 150+ year old lilacs - the whole farm smelled of their scent

Little hoop house with turnip, lettuce, radish and spinach

Sugarhund Jenny

Action shot of Jenny and Akita playing

A hand written list from Laurie's mini sprouting greenhouse

Every Spring Laurie hooks me up with dozens of plants for my garden.  This year we have:
  • Bhut Jolokia hot peppers - apparently the world's hottest
  • Morning glories
  • Pink pear tomatoes
  • Cherry tomatoes
  • Beefsteak tomatoes
  • Bell peppers: red, yellow and orange
  • Paprika peppers
  • Onions
  • Red and green savoy cabbage
  • Broccoli
  • Purple cauliflower that stays purple when you cook it
  • Purple cauliflower that turns green when you cook it
  • Red and green brussel sprouts
  • Lacinato kale
  • and Artichokes!
The bounty of Earth via the generosity of my friend - I am so grateful for the Holmans ☼

Sunday, May 26, 2013


What's cuter than the bunnies eating dandelions?

Blackie gits it


Saturday, May 25, 2013

Friday, May 24, 2013

double wide

Rudy checks out my two bluebird houses - I had prospective tenants checking out the houses within an hour of putting them up.  I can see them from my kitchen window.

Thursday, May 23, 2013

orchard update

There are lots of beautiful additions to the orchard

Plum and apricot trees

3 varieties of blueberry bushes

Honeycrisp apple blossoms

Peach blossoms

Macintosh apple blossoms

Pear blossoms

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

whaddya think, I was born last week?

The chicks are just over a week old now, and doing great - Blackie is an excellent Mom

There are 10 chicks, 8 black and 2 yellow

They eat, chirp and run around, and are super ultra cute

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

sky study #88

May 21, 2013

the Taleggio experiment

I made a prototype (square) wheel of Taleggio cheese, a traditional Italian "stinky" washed rind variety.  A Boss Mouse customer asked me to give it a try, so we'll see how it comes out.  Taleggio molds are flat and square (creating a large surface area) and have a textured rind to capture all the smelly, moldy goodness.

Monday, May 20, 2013

mini cheese

I taught a day full of mozzarella making classes to the students at The Children's House Montessori school in Traverse City

They make hair nets look cute

They were delightful and it was the most progressive, amazing school environment I've ever been in - it was an exhausting and fun day

Saturday, May 18, 2013

sky study #87

sunrise Friday, May 17th, 2013

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Wednesday, May 15, 2013


I fired up my Mom's 1980s yogurt maker, which still works beautifully

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

a true Mother's Day

Appropriately, Blackie's chicks hatched on Mother's Day.  There are 9 so far (one is off to the side in this pic) and if you look closely, one has cracked the shell and is on his way out - I could hear the 
tap-tap-tap of his pecking when I checked on them this evening. Blackie is keeping them warm and they all look bright and healthy.  
More than anything I do on this farm, I am a disciple of nature and the indescribable beauty and awe of life.  
You are all Aunts and Uncles!

Monday, May 13, 2013

the dirtiest job on the farm

is the annual mucking out of the hen house

About 20 wheelbarrows full of bedding and chicken poo to compost. There is so much beauty and romance to farming, and equally as much hard, physical, filthy work.  I love it.

Sunday, May 12, 2013

nothing says May like...

a big, cold, wet snow storm

snow on the rhubarb

frosty forsythia

Friday, May 10, 2013

chicken ultrasound

The other day I discovered broody Blackie not only sitting atop the dozen fertilized eggs I gave her, but at least a dozen more eggs.  The other chickens have been laying eggs on top of her.  Though she has a million other places to lay her egg, today I found the other Blackie hen squeezed into the nesting box to lay an egg right on top of Blackie and her eggs. Crazy birds.

So how do you tell which eggs are Blackie's chicks and which ones are non-fertile?  Egg "candling".  If you hold an egg very close to the light of a flashlight at the right angle, you can see it's contents.  I inspected each egg and determined about a dozen to be edible, whereas the other half were completely opaque - which means they held a baby chick.  There is another week or so to go before they hatch, but I hope removing the plain eggs will make her a little more comfortable.  Nature is so weird.

Thursday, May 9, 2013

the beauty of the barter: art for cheese

One of the farmer's market vendors always wants to trade his foraged mushrooms for cheese.  I love his mushrooms, but have so many already, so this time he traded me a *drawing* of mushrooms instead. Wow.

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Goodbye Red

Red died peacefully of natural causes Wednesday, May 8th, 2013.  A beautiful Rhode Island Red hen, she was one of the original 15 hens I got when I first moved to the farm, and the mean, bawdy matriarch of the flock.

Verdant Farm

This is my friend David from Verdant Farm in Copemish, Michigan - he is an interesting young man.  He made the buckskin coat he is wearing himself, from a buck he hunted and processed himself.  He makes charcuterie (cured meats), sells organic raw honey and bee products at the market, and yes, that is a woollen placket as a headband.  Viva David!

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

a hole so deep... can only see the tip of his tail - Max's latest masterpiece

Monday, May 6, 2013

little gems

A bouquet of radishes at the farmer's market

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Saturday, May 4, 2013