Friday, January 21, 2011

Man, do I have some cool things to share with you!


 First of all, I have some good news/bad news/great news.  The bad news is that Mr Thompson sold his cows.  The good news is that he sold them to a wonderful couple right up the street.  The great news is that I just spent the most wonderful morning meeting them.  I wish I had remembered my camera when we were all sitting at their kitchen table.  Their names are Rex and Marie and if anyone wants their contact information, it will be listed at the bottom of this blog.  They are such wonderful people and so willing to share their knowledge.  I walked away literally bursting with new ideas!
     They do many things.  They have their cows and chickens.  She's made all kinds of great cheeses, which she was kind enough to let me sample, and yogurts, cottage cheese, butter, I could go on and on!  One of the things that I respect the most is a members only, u-pick garden.  Now that might sound a little daunting to start but let me clarify.  You can pay the fifty-dollar annual membership or you can work it off with seven hours of labor in the garden.  It is very important to her to provide this service to people.  I hope I do it justice in sharing it.  She has been through tough times herself.  She remembers how hard it was to buy the healthy foods her children needed.  Fresh fruits and vegetables are quite expensive when you are on a tight budget.  For fifty dollars a year you can buy the produce you pick at wholesale prices.  For example, if Wal-mart is selling tomatoes at a dollar a pound, you can get them at sixty cents a pound.  Here is the kicker.  These vegetables blow store-bought vegetables out of the water with better flavor!  We all know that everything always taste better when it is grown at home!
     She also gave me a start of Kefir grains.  No, it is not a grain.  It is a culture.  It contains all the good bacterias that our bodies need.  You put some in a glass of milk, top it, let it set on the counter over night.  Then you strain the kefir out and start tomorrow's batch and add honey to the first batch, shake  and refrigerate.  It is thinner than yogurt.  I had a glass and it was delicious.  What is it good for?  When I got home I googled it and here are the results I came up with from http:/

Here are some of the known kefir health benefits:
  1. Strongest natural remedy against any allergy
  2. Strongest natural antibiotic without side effects
  3. Treats liver disease
  4. Treats gallbladder, dissolves gall bladder stones
  5. Clears the body of salts, heavy metals, radionuclides, and alcoholic products
  6. Cleans the body of chemical antibiotics
  7. Treats kidney stones
  8. Good bacteria in kefir are able to fight off pathogenic microorganisms
  9. Lowers level of LDL cholesterol
  10. Cleans the gastrointestinal tract
  11. Irritable Bowel Syndrome
  12. Treats gastritis
  13. Treats pancreatitis
  14. Treats ulcers
  15. Prevents and treats colon cancer
  16. Improves digestion
  17. Improves the body functions
  18. Improves the human immune system
  19. Cures Candida
  20. Cures hypertension
  21. Stops growth of cancer cells
  22. Speeds up healing process
  23. Treats psoriasis
  24. Treats eczema
  25. Treats inflammatory diseases
  26. Reduces size of tumors
  27. Treats heart disease
  28. Reverses calcination of blood vessels
  29. Clears the blood vessels
  30. Boosts the bodies energy
  31. Natural “feel good” food
  32. Treats lung infections
  33. Normalizes metabolism thereby can be used as for weight loss
  34. Cures acne
  35. Has anti-oxidants and anti-aging properties
  36. Nourishes hair
  37. Treats the gum disease parodontosis
  38. Lessens effects of medicines
  39. Replenishes body of good bacteria after antibiotic
  40. Balances the microflora of the body’s digestive system
  41. Regulates blood pressure
  42. Lowers blood sugar
  43. Lowers blood lipid levels or cholesterol and fatty acids
  44. Treats diarrhea
  45. Treats constipation
  46. Promotes bowel movement
  47. Anti-stress properties
  48. Treats sleeping disorders
  49. Treats depression
  50. Treats attention deficit hyperactivity disorder
  51. Improves the brains neuro functions like reflexes, memory retention, attention, the five senses
  52. Reduces flatulence
  53. Lactic acid fermentation enhances the digestibility of milk based foods. People who cannot otherwise digest milk, can enjoy the vital calcium rich Kefir.
  54. Treats yeast infection
  55. Eliminates vaginal odors
  56. Cures wrinkles
  57. Treats arthritis
  58. Treats colitis
  59. Treats gout
  60. Cures migranes
  61. Treats rheumatism
  62. Treats other stomach disorders
  63. Detoxifies the body
  64. Improves protein quality of milk, and enhances absorption and digestion
  65. Good bacteria manufacture B vitamins such as B3, B6 and folic acid.
  66. Aids in treating tuberculosis
  67. Treats stomach cramps
  68. Treats chronic intestine infections
  69. Treats liver infections
  70. Treats asthma
  71. Treats bronchitis
  72. Treats sclerosis
  73. Treats anemia
  74. Treats hepatitis
  75. Healing effects on catarrh, digestive nodes, astral nodes, bilious complaints
  76. Treats leaky gut syndrome
  77. Prevents metastasis
  78. Cures bad morning breath

Pretty impressive eh?  Especially considering how expensive all these yogurts are getting, aka: Danactive and Activa, it is so nice to know that I can give my family the same benefits and still stay on budget.
     I have touched on this next subject a couple of times.  There is a real battle going on in this country over real food and whether or not we have the right to eat it.  As I have gotten more into my gardening and learning to be self-sufficient I have come across it more and more.  If the FDA had their way, we would all be eating processed everything.  There will never be a processed food that will give your body what it needs to function properly.  I am going to list a website that is right smack in the middle of this battle and I hope that you will take the time to read about.  Another great site is  We all need to be a part of this movement.  
     It has been a good day.  Hope your's all were as well.  

Saturday, January 8, 2011

January, 2011. Fresh Starts.

January, 2011

     So the new year is upon us and I am filled with anticipation!  There is something so special about fresh starts, second chances or "do-overs", as we used to call it as a kid.  The good Lord knows that I have gotten more than my fair share of all of the above.   Moving out here was a fresh start in and of itself for me.  It was out in the middle of nowhere.  Too far for me to walk to town.  I gave up my keys, took my name off the bank account and checked into rehab.   After 60 days of that I came home to start rebuilding my life.  That was 6 years ago.  I've said before and I'll say it again; Sobriety rocks!  It's been the best six years of my life.   I am living proof that God can take you where ever you are and start from there.   I thank the Lord every day for the life he saved for me till I was strong enough to start living it for myself.  I have known so many souls over the years that lost their families due to their addictions and had to rebuild their lives alone.
     I have learned a lot since my first post.  The biggest lesson has been how hard the American farmer has been put upon by the powers that be.  If the FDA had it's way, none of us would be eating real foods.  They do not think we have the inherit rights to choose the foods we eat.  I pray for them all daily.  I learned that it is illegal for restaurants to use cheese unless it has been pasteurized.   I have learned how to pasteurize the farm fresh milk.   Next week my bff, Mary Ann and sister-in-law,  Nancy will be attending a women's business seminar put on by  They are a wonderful group that encourages small businesses here in Oklahoma.  Mary Ann and I are doing the cheese together and Nancy has a beautiful shop in Bixby, Oklahoma aptly named "Vintage Abode" where she sells antiques, transfer-ware, hand carved furniture and many other beautiful things.  Nancy also has a blog as well that is one of my favorite reads.  Here is the link.   You need to check it out.  I always love networking with other women.  It is my hope that REI will be able to help me with the labeling and marketing of my cheeses.  Once those hurdles have been overcome I will be ready to go.  
     I started planning this year's garden the other day.  I am really going to move things up this year.  I am incorporating some new aspects that we have not done before.  The first being fruit trees.   We will be planting peach, pear, apple and plum trees.  We planted two pomegranate  trees last fall.  I also heard that the state will donate pecan trees to anyone that wants to grow them.  I will be checking with the Department of Agriculture to see if that is true.  We also planted blueberry and thorn-less blackberries last fall.  This spring we will be adding strawberries and raspberries.  I'm really working on getting some perennial food sources going.  We want to get a beehive to put in the meadow to help with pollination of all our garden areas.  It blew my mind to learn that the bee population has dropped 90 percent in the last 50 years.  They don't know why really but that is a scary fact to me.  They are so vital in the food cycle!  I am allergic to bees but as I've gotten older I've learned how to avoid angering them and if we are going to have a thriving garden then we need their help.
     Another new venue that we will be incorporating into our garden this year will be grains.  We will be considering barley, buckwheat, oats, rye, corn and wheat.  You don't have to have acres and acres to grow them.  They can be planted in flower gardens just like ornamental grasses.  Once I have mastered growing them I will move to the "field" planting method.
     As always, we will be doing the herbs.  I am also concentrating on perennials in that category as well.  Oklahoma is perfect for sage, which will come back for about five years and rosemary and lavender, which will live for years and years.  The mints and oregano I'm going to keep in pots this year.  They both seem to want to take over the beds.  The rest will be bedded.  I usually get three to five harvest per year off of them when I do it correctly.
     I'm going to be moving my tomatoes, and the vine plants out of the raised beds garden this year. I have plenty of room around the property to accommodate them with out robbing the other plants of sun and nutrients.  That was probably the biggest lesson I learned last year.  I nearly choked out a lot of my plants.
     I will have the lettuce, chards, carrots, beets, onions, radishes and sweet potatoes in the ground in late February - early March.  I still have cabbages, swiss chard, garlic, lettuce and spinach growing right now!  I love the growing season here in Oklahoma.  In April I will get the snow peas, tomatoes, grains, berries, cabbages, peppers, eggplant, rhubarb, beans, asparagus, black-eyed peas going.  In June I will start the okra, squash and the rest of the vine plants (aka: cucumbers, melons, pumpkins, etc)  The squash bugs are too invasive in the spring.  Last year I had over 25 plants that were killed off by that stupid bug before they could produce!  Yet, when I replanted them in June they did great and produced well and they (squash bugs) were all gone for the most part by then.
     The other projects that we have on the burners right now are fencing in the meadow and building a chicken coop.  The meadow will be put off for another year I fear.  We just don't have the capital, unless I can get a grant or loan.  The chicken coop will be done this winter.  By fall I hope to be getting eggs and butchering some chickens as well.
     Well folks, I think that is going to wrap things up for now.  I hope this has been informative and entertaining as well.  If anyone has a desire to learn how to do any of the things I talk of here, feel free to ask me.  Here's hoping that your new year is full of love, mercy, forgiveness and grace.  
God bless!

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.
Galatians 5:22-23