Sunday, July 8, 2012

The Zucchini Chef

Ehren is definitely the chef of the house.

Since we have had a major overrun of regular and yellow zucchini from the garden, he's taken to picking one and sauteing it for a snack.  I the light the gas burner (they aren't allowed to turn on the stove), but really he does the rest. 

The kids don't seem to care for my Tuscan Parmesan zucchini saute, so he struck out on his own.  If you're dying for the recipe, he simply slices it up, sautes it in olive oil, and sprinkles it with creole seasoning.

After Ehren made zucchini a few times, Anna asked if she could make some too. She's good at cutting it up, but I had to supervise the rest. 

Finally Christian {always the last to come around on a new idea} asked when he "would be old enough to cook zucchini."  Totally funny way to ask since he's the same age as Ehren and older than Anna!  He turned out to be a good zucchini chef too.

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Undercover Chickens: Henpecked

Even non-farmer Dan is warming up to the chickens.  He likes to let them perch on his shoulder like a parrot perches on a pirate's shoulder.  

The other day he was posing for pictures with Madge.  As I was snapping away, she decided maybe she didn't like being a parrot anymore.

Friday, July 6, 2012

Slip n' Slide Fun

With the record-breaking July heat, it was time for some water sports {even if the water was from a backyard hose}.

We dug out last year's slip n' slide.   

Anna is a kamikaze water-slide pro!  It wasn't fun enough just running full speed and sliding.  She amped it up by getting out a boat floatation cushion and using it like a sled.

The boys had a friend from school over to enjoy the water fun. The play date turned into to their first friend sleepover, complete with a movie on Netflix and popcorn.

Thursday, July 5, 2012

I Turned My Chickens Into Cannibals

Having chickens for the first time is like having a new baby.  Everyone wants to visit them; everyone asks a lot of questions about them; and finally, everyone who has ever had chickens gives you advice.  The other day at Costco, someone in the refrigerator aisle asked me if I thought it was worth it to spend the extra money to buy the organic eggs.  I said, "I don't know. I'm waiting for my new backyard chickens to start laying eggs so I don't have to buy them anymore."  He said, "Oh, you have chickens!  I used to raise chickens.  They eat everything, you know.  You're feeding them all your food scraps, right?  Make sure to feed them your scraps."  I got this advice from several chicken-raising veterans.

Actually, I had been wondering what I could feed them besides the store-bought feed.  I give them different raw vegetable scraps, but moving the coop around every couple days provides a constant supply of yard weeds to eat, so they aren't always enthusiastic about the vegetable scraps.  The other day, I gave them some watermelon rinds, and it turns out they love watermelon as much as my kids!  In short order, they ate everything right down to the thin tough green outer rind.  I got the same result with cantaloupe rinds.

Over the Fourth of July, we had some friends staying with us.  They used to raise backyard chickens and also encouraged us to feed them more table scraps.  They had some restaurant leftovers they didn't want to take with them when they left.  They said, "Just feed it to the chickens.  They'll eat anything."  I took their advice, and sure enough they devoured everything with gusto, especially the meat.  And then I realized I had just turned my chickens into cannibals.  They were eating chicken enchiladas.

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Undercover Chickens: The Chicken Wrangler

The girls are growing up.

Anna loves the chickens.  I'd like to tell you she is a chicken whisperer, charming them with gentle words and a soft voice like the picture below implies, but you're more likely to see her chasing them around trying to catch one.  She's more like a chicken wrangler than a chicken whisperer.