Thursday, May 14, 2015

Blooming and growing - our plants and our lives

Life is moving at a relentless fast pace – in a good way. It has been warm and summer-y, and all the plants are way ahead of schedule. My roses are blooming two or three weeks earlier than usual. I am not complaining – I love the scent and beauty of my Old English roses.
I am relishing my flower garden a lot. On Mother's Day, my husband Steve helped me tackle (and complete!!!) a project that has been on my to-do-list for over half a decade. It never gets done because there are always so many other priorities. So when Steve asked me what I wanted do do for Mother's Day, I quickly made my wishes known, and after hours of hard labor my garden beds now look Sunset Magazine-worthy. My previously wild-and-tumble flowers are now somewhat tamed and look a little bit more civilized – just in time for my mother's visit from Germany.

We also re-did the access to the beehive.  Before, it was a mess: uneven ground, mulched with cardboard, ugly.  We leveled the area, mulched it with cedar chips, and landscaped with rocks.  It looks decent now, and we can actually inspect the bee hive without having to do a balancing act while trying to stay calm and move slowly as to not upset the bees! 

We love our bees!  They are very well behaved and are busy building comb and making honey.  We have so much to learn!

Aside from gardening (my garden is in!  my garden is in!), I have been working hard on my online cheese making course.  I am writing e-books on four different varieties: how to make Greek Yogurt, how to make Chevre, how to make Gouda, and how to make Cabra Al Vino.  I'm putting the finishing touches on all four books.  Next, I will make movies to demonstrate all the techniques.  Check out my class here.  At $59, it's a really, really, really good deal.

You can totally learn how to make this wine soaked cheese!

We are managing to fit in some fun as well!  The other day, we went to one of our local, wild creeks, "swam" (which involved jumping into the glacier fed creek, screaming really loudly, and jumping out again really fast!) and roasted sausages and marshmallows over a fire the boys built.

And, of course, we continue to play with the goats.  The goat babies are growing up!

I will leave you with a picture of my twelve year old son baking an apple pie, all by himself.  One day, he will have a very happy wife.


  1. Beautiful photographs! Your life looks like so much fun.

    A question on the cheese making class. Is there anyway you can put this on disk for me or some other way than You Tube videos? We have satellite here and our band width for downloads is very small. We use up our allotment very fast. I decided I want to sign up for your cheese making class because your sauerkraut recipe and procedure worked very well for me! I will pay postage and extra if you would consider that. Or maybe you have some other suggestions for a satellite-burdened me. Thanks so much. - renee

    1. Dear Renee,
      I am exactly in the same boat as you are! We have satellite internet and limited band width. Here is what I do: We have bonus times (from 11pm to 8am) where we don't pay but use our bonus time. Do you have that? Because I do all my download and upload-heavy work then. For example, I have been taking an online course for a month, which is very intensive on movies and downloads. So I download my stuff before 8 am and watch the movies then, too.
      The other thing I do is go to the library or Starbucks or any place who has high speed internet and then download stuff there. Remember, I will send one e-book a week, and a couple of movies for the hard cheese, so it's not that much downloadable stuff.
      If you think you could make that work, it would be great.
      If that doesn't work, I could figure out how to burn my movies onto a disk and send it to you. I've never burnt movies onto discs, but I could research it.
      So excited you want to sign up for my class!

    2. You understand! OK I will look into that bonus time. I hope we have it. We have a little library nearby. I can check what kind of bandwidth they have. If I have to go to the length of going into town... hmmm, maybe our town that is 30 minute drive away would work. Otherwise it's an hour drive. One way.

      I have a couple things to do right now but when I get back I'll sign up. I'm hoping I can get my completely frustrating non-food husband to try gouda. This is another story but my great guy who is great in every other way is a complete adolescent when it comes to food. For example, he only likes cheddar cheese. He only eats scrambled eggs and they have to be almost burned. He only likes store bought french bread. To make it simple he only likes food that are brown, white or one yellow thing and it's not mustard! (Hates mustard) He doesn't eat vegetables except for carrots (yellow) and they have to be raw not cooked. I'm going to stop here because I'm going into rant mode!

      So.... I am making the soft cheeses for myself and the rest of the family who are omnivores like me. I'm hoping I can get him to try gouda because I'm hoping I can make it hard(er) like cheddar. He likes the cheddar for cheeseburgers (dry, nothing on them except meat and cheese). Maybe you can help me with a new challenge. But if not I still want to know how to make cheese. I'm half german half french and the french side of me really really likes cheese! The german side really likes sauerkraut!

  2. Just found your blog thru Heather, Beauty That Moves. I enjoyed your post and look forward to spending some time looking at your older posts too. Lovely photos and beautiful family.

    1. Susan, I'm so glad you found us! I hope you will be inspired here!


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