Ohiofarmgirl's Adventures in The Good Land is largely a fish out of water tale about how I eventually found my footing on a small farm in an Amish town. We are a mostly organic, somewhat self sufficient, sustainable farm in Ohio. There's action and adventure and I'll always tell you the truth about farming.

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Making scones for marmalade!

I'm very very lucky to have such a good friend. She just got back from an extended vacation and brought me an adorable little jar of sunny marmalade. So of course I had to make scones so I could enjoy it!

What could be better!?!

Do you know you can make scones in about 30 minutes? It's so easy peasy that you can make them for breakfast just about any old time. Here is the basic recipe that I use.  You can fold in any kind of fruit... or just have them plain.

Sift together your flour, sugar, salt and baking powder. You don't need a fancy sifter - just use one of those little kitchen sieves.

Cut in the butter - yes, I made the butter. I like to use my little handy chopper to combine the butter and flour. I don't have a full sized food processor but I love this little one.

Next, make a little volcano with the beaten eggs and cream. I use a pastry blade and a fork to combine the dry into the wet ingredients. You really don't want to handle the dough very much - you just want it to come together. Then form the dough into a loaf and then cut the scones.

Fortunately for me I had a lot of help while I was making these scones. Thanks, Nicholas. 

I used a biscuit cutter for these scones instead of making them in traditional triangle shapes. Why? Because my pal A has been talking about strawberry shortcake for dinner! I figured after I finished the marmalade I could use the scones for shortcake. I did. Awesome!

Why was the dough so yellow? Fresh spring eggs, baby! Yeah! And also because I made the butter and it was really a beautiful color.

Finally just brush with cream/egg wash and bake them at 400* for about 20 minutes.

Would you just look at how beautifully they turned out!

Thank you so much, you-know-who-you-are!!!  I'm so glad you are back! And thanks for the jar of sunshine!

Happy Wednesday everyone - are you baking for the spring season?

Monday, March 28, 2016

First planting of potatoes

It sure felt like spring there for a couple days.... we had some terrific weather over the weekend. It was almost like summer. I got some potatoes planted.

So I remember where they are.... just a couple small rows. It's a good start.

There is a rule of thumb around here that you can plant potatoes on the 90th day of the year. I might have rushed a little but I don't think we'll get another huge snow. In fact, I think the ground is warming up nicely.

Almost free potatoes.

This basket of potatoes was from the auction last summer. I figured they were ready to get growing. Can you plant spuds that are sprouting? Yep! But if you are planting this early be sure to mulch them deeply with fresh straw.

The garlic is coming up!

Last year I didn't get the first sprouted potatoes planted until the end-ish of April. When I was at the feed store this weekend I also got some onion starts and bulbs. I didn't get any in the ground but I started several pots of lettuce, peas, and then I popped a few of the onion sprouts into them as well. I can't wait for fresh food. I didn't get fresh salad until the end of May last year - this year I hope to have it a little sooner.

The peach trees are blooming.....

...and so are the pears. 

Really hoping for fruit this year. It's so odd to me that Ohio's fruit is so hit and miss. Our orchard friends only have peaches one out of every three years. Of course they always have apples. Hopefully.

Me, I just have my eye on lettuce and potatoes for now. This weekend we had to buy celery... I have to tell you, I was not happy about buying produce that we eat without cooking. There always seems to be something goofy going on. I'll feel much better when we can just go out to the yard to get our salad.

Happy Monday everyone - are you getting their first of the potatoes in the ground?

Friday, March 25, 2016

So, OD tried to drown that little rooster in a bucket.....

I honestly didn't think this story could get any weirder but it did. I honestly didn't think our funny little farm could get any weirder but it did. Yesterday was a new high - or low as the case may be.

OD our Demon Gander, assassin, from several years ago. 

That gander we have, OD, he and I have a complicated relationship. I love him. I hate him. I love to hate him.... I hate to love him. Mostly this time of year I really really hate him. You remember the story of when we first got him, right? The geese are extremely aggressive right now because our lady goose, Cindy Lou, has made a nest. The two younger ganders and OD have ratcheted up their protective instincts and nothing is safe.

Not only are they trying to kill me every time I go out to feed them or put them up for the night - they are also trying to kill everyone and everything else outside. Zander thinks this is hilarious and thinks teasing the geese is the funniest thing every. Kai thinks this is hilarious and goes out looking for a fight.... but unlike Zander, she is serious about it.  Poor Lucky, hobbling along like he is, is not fast enough to get away so we all usually have to save him from those mean geese.  Ti has had enough of all of their hijinks.

I'm always getting the stink eye from that guy.

The geese are so aggressive that I've been holding back a story because I didn't believe anyone would believe me. But believe you me this happened... the other day I heard a ruckus and I looked out to find that chicken killing hawk on the ground fighting all four geese!  Friends, I'm here to tell you that is a fight she cannot win. I couldn't believe my own eyes. We rushed outside but she flew straight up and got away. The geese were not injured.

I swear to you that happened.

I thought that was the most unbelievable goose story ever. But that isn't even the weirdest thing to happen. Yesterday morning, before chores, I heard various flapping and figured the geese were just yelling at each other. But Titan hopped up, in alarm, and so we ran out there.  I have learned to always believe the dog.

We rushed over to the Turkey House (where the geese are) and threw open the door. Ti and I both stood there slack-jawed and buggy eyed to see OD trying to drown that new little rooster in a bucket!


OD: *spits a mouthful of feathers out* Wut?

I honestly didn't know if he had killed that little rooster or not. Ti and I sprang to action. There was a fight, actual hand to hand combat... and then goose to dog combat.... OD was not winning that one.

Quickly I called the dog back and booted that goose out of the Turkey House.

That little rooster lay in a heap.

"Um... you OK there little Buddy?" I asked. I mighta poked him a little with my boot. He rallied.

The Demon Roo of ThatOtherCounty was not so tough as it seems. Getting his tail feathers kicked by an overgrown duck kinda took the shine off his he-man machismo.  For the record, he still hasn't tried to make a run at me. And yeah we still have him because The Big Man was called into work on his 'free' day. But soon we'll end up with that smaller than expected dinner we'd been promised.


I have no idea how OD got into the roo's coop. I have no idea why he was trying to drown him in a bucket. And I have no idea what is going to happen next.

All I know is that we have a very very very odd little life and I couldn't make this stuff up if I tried.

Happy Friday everyone! Are there poultry fisticuffs at your place? Have you ever seen anything like this before?

Thursday, March 24, 2016


Now here is something that you never want to see....

Dang hawk.

We are pretty sure this was the work of that little hawk who lives along the fence line. She got one of the chickens the other day. She is being very bold right now.

Nothing makes you as mad as a hawk attack. What can you do? Mostly nothing but be mad. Check your state laws. Unlike various other varmints that are subject to be handled with extreme prejudice by either your's truly or the Dog Horde... you really can't do anything about the birds of prey but lock down your flocks.

One of the best defenses we have against birds of prey, of all things, are the geese. Running your chickens with larger birds - or goats - actually helps to discourage the hawks. Any of the victims we have found have been on the outskirts of the free range area.

You should also have a good rooster. Our boys do an extremely good job of keeping an eye on the ladies. A very specific "G-A-AAA-ROOOOOOCK" by one of the roos sends the hens running toward cover....and send me and the Dog Horde running toward the hens.

When I found this sad pile of feathers while doing evening chores I immediately started to look for a body....but didn't find one. So I went in and checked all the hennies. One of the gals, with matching feathers, was hiding and had a patch of missing and broken feathers. Thank heavens she lived!

A fluffy little thing - there was no way she fought off the hawk. I think she just got lucky. I checked her all over and she seemed fine. Talk about the one that got away!

Happy Thursday everyone! Are you hawk hunting your hens?

Monday, March 21, 2016


Editor's note: I tried. I really really really tried to write this without all the rude jokes. But due to my extreme immaturity I just couldn't. Decent folks should probably not read this. Come back tomorrow and we'll talk about serious farming things. 

Fred. The dread roo who served our flock for many years. Gone all these long years. I still miss him.

There is no easy way to say this, friends, this weekend we were lured with pizza to go and get some strange cock. It turns out that some folks we know have neighbors who found out that having a rooster isn't always hilarious. While we had sworn off being the dumping ground for other people's problems that pizza sounded pretty good. And you know what they say, even bad pizza is still pretty good. So we went.

We had been hearing of The Demon Bird of Doom for a while. The folks we know had been proclaiming their neighbor's Devil Bird's fowl deeds to us for a while. Mostly we nodded politely but in truth we just thought that their neighbor's needed to control their rooster and stop complaining.

Their voices got more shrill lately and they had wound themselves up into a fury and said the neighbor's needed to get rid of of that rooster before it killed someone. The way they talked about it - this was Beelzu-Bird himself.  Finally their sad and scared faces wore down our good judgement...and there was that pizza to think about.

As it was the pizza was pretty disappointing. There wasn't even dippin' sauce for it. And it wasn't hot due to some kind of long and convoluted explanation. But we are always grateful when someone buys us a meal. So mostly we just hoped that the bagged salad they served us wouldn't kill us with ecoli. We determined to move the day along and said we should get on with it.

We went over to their neighbor's ready for violence. When we arrived  we were well warned that The Terror Of ThatOtherCounty would likely kill us. Everyone - including two grown men - had been chased by that mean roo. We surely didn't stand a chance, they said.

So desperate were their cries of terror and lamentations of approaching death that we were starting to wonder if we should have brought a gun.... or the dog.  Or maybe even my axe.

As it was the neighbor lady, owner of that bad hombre roo, came out holding a string with a very small dog attached to it. She was wearing colorful barn boots will little duckies on them.  My husband and I looked at each other and silently agreed that these were probably not people on our level of rooster handling professionalism.

We left the tactical gear in the car and asked to be shown to their coop.

The folks we know, along with the lady in the ducky boots, were practically shrieking at us that we should be careful! Doom! Doom! DOOOOOOM awaits behind that closed coop door!

Always cautious we prepared to meet our foe. The Big Man led the way with me, one hand on his back, following close behind. He held up a closed fist signalling for us to "Freeze!" We both froze, crouched low, and listened.

Silently my husband signaled me to cover him while he breached the door and that we would use Offensive Operation Delta Zed to extract the target. I nodded.

We both knew to meet back at that rally point if this operation went sideways..... and of course, it was understood that we never negotiate with the enemy. It is well known that have a standing order to always shoot the hostage if one of us were captured. We understood the risks.

The on-lookers had moved back behind our safety perimeter - but were clutching each other and screaming.

It was go time. We stood at the ready outside the shed. Three....two.... one... Go! Go! Go!

My husband flung open the door and was first into the breach. In one fell swoop he snatched up that rooster in one try. He walked out of the shed and victoriously held up the Beast Bird. We gave each other the side eye.... El Grande Gallo was a 3 pound micro-roo.

"Are you kidding me?" I asked.  My husband, man of action but of few words, just huffed.

He tucked the little rooster under his arm, pinning it's wings, and walked toward the terrified crowd.

The onlookers were shocked and amazed. They muttered to themselves about how they were very nearly killed by that bird, how it had chased someone's grandpa, and how for months they had not even been able to go out in the yard.

They had never seen professional rooster handlers nor had they ever seen a rooster grabbed right off his perch with such precision. My husband is a master of the cock snatch so he didn't have any trouble at all. They couldn't believe it.

"He's....he's not even trying to KILL you?" Exclaimed the lady in the ducky boots incredulously.

I've known my husband for a long time so I recognized his clipped response "No" as him being already tried of their foolishness. We walked, uneventfully, back to the car where my husband unceremoniously shoved that little rooster in to the pet carrier in the back of the car.

Frankly we were more than a little miffed by the whole thing. We are generally annoyed by people who shirk their responsibilities..... like not being able to handle their own rooster. Livestock isn't a game to us and being whipped into a rooster frenzy, expecting death and violence, over a smallish bird just kind of makes us mad.

Farming isn't all baby chicks and sunshine. You need to be able to either manage your mean cock or send him to glory - not foist your troubles on some fool who was promised pizza. We felt hoodwinked because that little roo was hardly big enough for dinner. We'll have to butcher one of our other roosters to even make a full pot of coq au vin. This was hardly worth our time.

The parting shot of the day was that as we were saying goodbye to them my hubs yelled over his shoulder, "Thanks for the meal!"

He meant, "Thanks for lunch, people who bought pizza" but the rooster's owner started crying.

I tried to soothe things over but she didn't know about the pizza and only thought we were being mean and were gonna run right home and fricassee her little rooster friend, who we found out was named Buddy. I wasn't doing a very good job of consoling her so we just both hopped in the car and drove away as fast as we could. It was a very very unsatisfying day.

We we finally got home we had to watch some really violent shows and have some booze. We were promised hand to hand combat with a Devil Roo and all's we got was cold pizza and a fluffy fancy show rooster.

I couldnt make this up if i tried.

Happy Monday everyone! How about you? Can you handle your rooster? Can you cock-a-doodle do?

Thursday, March 17, 2016

The greening of spring

I dunno.... I might declare winter over. Of course, that will probably mean it will snow next week but for now I'm going with "mostly over."

This lilac thinks it's spring. 

For the last several days we've had the windows open and I've been outside in a t-shirt and shorts. While I love summer better than spring... this has been pretty good.

These late planted turnips are starting to send up some greens.

Everything has suddenly turned green and we are all enjoying the sunshine.

The good news is that Ti is now off his pain meds and has made peace with the newer bed. Unfortunately, the cats had gotten used to sleeping on that bed so I have to keep chasing them off it so Ti can lay down.

As for me, I think I'm back also. I got new shoes and most of my mobility back. Let's hope we are all over our fally-downy disease.

I'd like to get some potatoes and onions going but we have been soaked with rain lately. If it will stay dry I think we will be in business. I don't know about you but I'm just about tired of store produce. I can't wait for the first salad of the year.

Happy Thursday everyone! Is your spring greening?

Monday, March 14, 2016

TL:DR Bubby Bedkiller disemboweled Ti's woobie.... it was an offal day.

Nothing but dog drama here.... Ti is much better but it's hard keeping a working dog off his feet.  We had to double down on our effort to keep Ti on strict rest. He's a tough guy so a little pain isn't enough to keep him from running around. It's been nothing but sitting around with short walks outside.

 Back in happier days when Ti had his favorite bed. Now in the trash.

All of the dogs are in fits because our routine is so disrupted...and they are all bored. To try and rein everyone in we've been doing a lot of dog shuffling. That is, we've been moving the dogs from room to room in different combinations trying to keep everyone entertained. This works. Mostly. But the rain is also putting a damper on everything so being stuck inside is not helping.

To make it worse, Zander destroyed Ti's favorite dog bed. To be fair, Zander started ripping up the bed and Kai kind of made it worse. But it's been extremely sad to see poor Ti, still in pain, trying to gather up the shredded remains of his favorite snuggle bed into a pile and try and get comfortable in the fluff.

Of course, there is also the cat factor... every chance she gets, Bitty, attacks the sad pile of dogbed fluff and it was getting dragged all over the house. I finally had to go around and gather it up and throw it away. 

The betrayal in Ti's eyes as I was throwing away his favorite bed was almost to much to bear. So it's been very very sad here. 

I tried to soothe it over with extremely fresh chicken hearts but that didn't even work. It's pretty bad when not even organ meat will make your dog smile.

TL:DR Bubby Bedkiller disemboweled Ti's woobie and I threw it away because I'm The Worst Momma ever. It was an offal day.

Saturday, March 12, 2016

Resting Bob Face

Our Bobbi Barncat is rarely still enough to get a good picture of her.... but here she is....

Master of the Angry Face

Our Bobbi perpetually looks angry but she really isn't. Much of the time she is being funny but she has that resting angry face.

Bobbi is Shine and Peep's sibling from the same litter. Peep, of course, lives in the house and is our calico terror. Shine is our King of Barncats and a hero among men. We don't talk about Bobbi much because she is so elusive but she has never missed a meal and always comes home.

She will come when The Big Man calls her but we've only ever been able to give a slight brush when she isn't paying attention. We've never been able to snuggle her. The running joke is that she is aloof around us but probably has another home and family where she stays  during the day and is the most lovable cat ever. In truth she just hangs out in the tall grass until my husband comes home.

Shine, Bobbi, and Peep will be ten years old this spring. That is a good long run for outside cats and about the halfway point for Peep as an indoor cat. None of them show any signs of slowing down.

Happy Saturday everyone! Do you snuggle your barncats? Or do they give you angry looks?

Friday, March 11, 2016

The Big Dog Avalanche of 2016

This past week has been really something. For the last couple of weeks I've been in recovery mode from my wonky hip that laid me low. I really thought we were on the upswing and everything was going great. Until Sunday when The Big Dog Avalanche of 2016 happened.

A little derpy but getting his smile back. And no, I will not throw the ball for you. NO RUNNING.

That's right. It was a Dog-valanche right down the stairs. Me and 470 lbs of dogs took a tumble down the steps on the way outside. While no one, including me, actually face-planted it was pretty bad. It happened fast - Ti and Kai got their feet tangled up on the way down the stairs and we all ended up pretty much in a heap.

Kai was the one who cried and held her bad back leg up....but it ended up that Titan got the worst of it. It was pretty bad - and older shepherd with bad hips taking a nasty spill is bad business. To make it even worse he is the most stoic of our crew. He does not show pain. Ever.

One time I watched Ti get a horrific cut on his paw, shake it off, spit on the ground, and say, "I ain't got time to bleed." That recovery was bad enough. But this hip thing has been much worse. For the first time My Most Excellent Good Sir was in pain and showing it. He couldn't get comfortable and I couldn't fix him.

There is too much detail to cover but suffice it to say there were a bunch of calls to the vet, a trip to the vet, several more calls, and a lot of futzing around until we got the pain medication right. I'm telling you, Titan is one tough dog. With direction from our Good Vet we gave him enough prescription drugs to knock the legs out from under a buffalo - and it didn't even phase Ti. All it did was make him mad. Or dizzy. But it didn't work at all.

Then there was the horrific "wait-for-that-drug-to-clear-his-system." That went on for almost a day. It was horrible. My poor big dog could not get comfortable and would not lay down. For 12 hours straight. It didn't help that Ti and I were giving each other a nervous breakdown. He was upset so I was upset. I was upset so he was even more upset. It was so bad that The Big Man just took Ti downstairs to sleep because we were just spinning each other up into fits.

I had an early morning alarm set the next day so we could switch to the next pain medication... within 30 minutes Ti and I were laying on the same dog bed. We were exhausted but it was working.

So that's what has been going on. A lot of me hovering. A lot of Ti fussing around. The rest of the pack going bananas because two of their leaders were completely nuts. So it's been a tough go for the last week.

Fortunately tho, we are on the upswing. I'm better, Titan is better, and we are getting the pack back to rights. I want to send a very special thanks to all my dog-pals who were so supportive. When a big dog falls he goes down hard. It was exceptionally tough to watch but having everyone's good wishes and checking on us really helped.

Happy Friday everyone - I hope that you have had a MUCH better week!

Monday, March 7, 2016

Windows are open and it's feeling like spring!

I have to remember that even tho today is going to be 60*-ish and sunny-ish.... that we normally get a snow around the end of March. But we did have that one year when we started working early in March and just didn't stop.

The only drops of snow that I'm happy to see. 

I'm a little nervous that we won't get any fruit this year either - this mild winter has really thrown everything for a loop.

The peach buds are starting to open. Too soon!

Today is a great day to get outside and fix up the hoop house. It was about this time of year that I originally started working on it. Aside from me buying the cheap plastic this project has been a complete success. You can read about how to starting with Step One here. Step Two here. Step Three here. And finally Step Four here...but um... get the good plastic.

I'm heading out.. but first.....

Random pic of Lucky and Ti when they were younger. 

Happy Monday everyone!

Saturday, March 5, 2016

Princess Wiggles DuckFinder

Dogs really are amazing. Really, really, really amazing. My Fighting Uruk-Hai Princess BearKiller is one of the most amazing of all dogs. Kai is my best hunter, our best killer, she is a relentless and exquisite predator. She's also really good at finding ducks. Who knew?

 Princess Wiggles DuckFinder. 

Our dogs earn names and titles for valor and deeds of bravery but I'm not sure that Kai will be officially titled with Princess Wiggles DuckFinder...it kinda takes the shine off that whole VengeanceBringer thing.

No, that is not her stick. Yes, she is teasing Ti. Yes, he is totally annoyed with her. Ha!

Despite being one of nature's most perfect killers our Kai is ridiculously silly. We've always called her Wiggles because of her funny personality - and the way she shakes her bonbon, double curled tail. She is a very very funny dog. She likes to play tricks and we are surprised at her advanced sense of humor. She loves to tease her brothers and has always been The World's Most Annoying Little Sister. We think she is perfect.

Our baby Kai when she first got here. She started out cute and she is still adorable today.

We have recently been riddled with predator attacks. Yesterday we went out to find one of our laying hens dead-by-hawk. We were mad. Real mad. There isn't one thing to do about it but get a feedsack and take up the shattered remains of that poor hen.

Then we looked around and realized we were missing a little duck - one of the runners. She is a good layer and funny little thing. The drakes were upset and confused. We walked the property looking for the duck - or a body. Nothing. We looked again. Nothing. Dang.

Whatcha doin', Kai? Goofin'? Good dog.

I decided to try one more time and went and got Kai. I showed her when the chicken had been killed hoping she would get the idea to find something similar to that scene.

"What do you see?" That is our command. It's kind of like "find it" but is more broad as in - look around and if there is anything unusual you should let me know. It's also a preliminary command to "get it" if hunting is required.

Kai put her nose to the ground and started patrolling.

 She has always been beautiful.

We made our way up to the garden where the ducks had been hanging around on the off chance that she had made a nest in the bramble. I pointed, "What do you see, Kai?"

But Wiggles had walked a few steps away from me with her nose down. "No. Here, Kai." I pointed where I wanted her to look in the brambles, "Here." She looked at me and grinned and shook her bonbon tail, nose down... facing the other way.

I'll be damned. Right there. There was the duck. I was practically standing on her. I didn't even see her and that duck hadn't made a sound. Kai pointed, smiling. Good girl.

The little duck was pretty bad off. It looked like someone had scalped her with a dull spoon. The geese. It had to be. They had been aggressive lately and OD has always had it out for the ducks. He wants to be the boss of them. Geese are mean, friend. Not only to people but also to other poultry. This little duck had really been worked over.

I picked her up. Apparently she had gotten tangled up in some netting so she was a sitting duck for goose abuse. I didn't think she would make it.

Kai and I carried the little duck back to the house. I yelled for The Big Man to call Kai in and give her treats. The duck and I went out to the garage. I fixed her up as best I could but did not have high hopes. At least she wouldn't die outside alone in the cold or killed by whatever stalks in the night.

This morning I went out to see if the little duck had made it - she did! Not only had she recovered but she found a few chicken eggs and sat herself down on them. Well, maybe that will give her something to do while she recovers. Thank heavens! And thank Kai!

For her part Princess Wiggles DuckFinder got extra treats and then went and ate everyone else's food. She might think that she is the Top Dog now and it's gonna take a while for that to settle down. But we were very proud of her. Not only for finding the duck but for finding-and-not-hunting.

It's a huge win for Kai - the difference between hunting and working. Some people will wonder if it was 'just lucky' that Kai found the duck? Nope. That's what a hard working farm dog does. It was intentional - not by happenstance. Did I set out one day to train Kai to find ducks? Nope. But I did train her to be a good dog and help me. It is a lot of effort but it's worth every minute.

To be absolutely clear, if I put Kai outside with the poultry alone it would be a massacre but she knows when we are working and what is expected. More than anything she loves to kill ducks. I was there the day she put it together that those loud flappy things were full of meat and blood. The look on her face was priceless, "You are KIDDING me?" So she knows what ducks are full of... but she also knows what it means to be a hard working farm dog.

I couldn't farm without my Dog Horde. Every day - every single day - I'm glad I have them and that I put the effort into training them.

Happy Saturday everyone! Did your best killer find a beaten down duck? Do you call her Wiggles?

Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Getting Started in Canning

One of my pals got a new pressure canner yesterday - I was so excited. The wonderful world of canning is a thrilling place to be. But... where do you start?

Are you dreaming of canning green beans? Now is a great time to get ready for canning!

Of course..... with the right tools!

I was terrified of my pressure canner when I first got it. I was sure I would blow up the house or kill us all. But nope. Now I have two canners and I discovered it's a fun and rewarding project. Provided that you follow the proper directions you will be just fine.

I think there are some people who are still pretty cavalier about "non-approved" methods... and truth be told, I have a lot of European friends who use methods that would send our FDA/USDA friends into fits. But then again, with all the current FDA approved products that are trying to kill you - like salad - you might as well take a run at canning. 

My strong recommendation is that you follow the guidelines to the letter and not go off on your own. Don't take short cuts even if Grammy used to do it that way.  The hard truth is that we live near-ish a community where several folks were grievously sickened - and at least one person died - when someone brought potato salad made from home-canned taters to a church pot luck. So my second strong recommendation is use your home canned products for your own use.

Whatever you do - get the right book which is the Ball Blue Book Guide to Preserving. Get it, read it, follow it to the letter. Do not trust recipes from the intertube without verifying the same directions from this book or your local extension office

What is a good project to get started with? Beans. Home canning beans is such a terrific project - it's relatively easy and you can really see the benefits. Sure you can grab a can of beans for about a dollar from the store. Or you can get a two pound bag of dried beans, can them at home, and have all your bean needs met for months.

Once you get into canning be sure to keep your pressure canner in check by getting it checked out. It's fun and easy.

It's super easy to order new parts so be sure to keep everything in tip top shape.

If you are nervous then ask around to see if some one will be willing to let you help them... or they might help you get started. Or check and see if your local extension office provides classes - I bet they do.

Happy Wednesday everyone - are you ready to get canning?

Editor's note 1: What's the word with another lame post full of links? I'm still pretty discombobulated. I have not fully been recombobulated from my wonky hip week of hell. I'm working on it. Until then this is all I've got. Mostly I've been sitting around complaining and eating everything that can't run from me.

Editor's note 2: Check it out - I have some affiliate links here.  Anything you buy from Amazon from these links gets me a tiny percentage of the sale. It doesn't cost you one cent more but it helps me with the "cost" of this blog. If you like this blog, or if I've helped you at all in your farming efforts, just make a purchase from Amazon from one of the links, my store, or the black Amazon search box on the right side of this page. It can be anything - one of my recommendations, books, movies, or whatever. Every little bit helps. Thanks!
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