When you raise livestock predators are one of the biggest worries you will face. After having a fox in our front yard this morning I have been thinking about the balance we try to keep with nature while still protecting our livestock.
Like most who raise animals, we have had to shoot the occasional predator who was threatening our livestock. I will admit there is a certain feeling of satisfaction for me being a woman who is able to handle these situations. Yet at the same time there is a feeling of sadness for the animal who's life I had to take. An animal who is doing the same thing the rest of us do, just trying to survive.
We have fences for some of the animals, but some of the chickens and ducks roam free. We have losses, but do our best to keep them to a minimum. We could confine these animals like we do our goats, but they would not be happy with that and their diet would not give us the healthy, flavorful meat we are trying to provide for our family.
We have also added a beautiful Great Pyrenees dog to our homestead. Few predators venture into the area at night now because they hear him bark and growl. They know that there is a fierce protector ready to do battle if confronted. The hope is that it will mean less loss of life both for our homestead and the wildlife around us.
The fox we saw today was run off. Yet it now knows what is here and that there may be a meal to be had. So I am forced to ask myself if I could shoot such a beautiful creature if it becomes necessary. The answer is probably yes, but only if I had no other choice.
I have learned that some times we face things in life that are hard. We have to balance safety and security with respect for what is around us. It's one of the hardest things we do.
Monday, May 13, 2013
I decided to go looking for morels today. Unfortunately I didn't find any. However I did find this nice, healthy looking gooseberry bush growing near the edge of the blackberry patch. Now I'm excited! (Yes, I'm aware how little it takes to excite me.) That makes four that I know of now. Maybe I really will get to make some gooseberry jelly soon.
Monday, March 25, 2013
You can't really tell from the picture, but that salad is HUGE. That is a small serving platter, not a dinner plate there. The best part, besides being delicious, is that the whole platter of food is all of 275 calories.
It's very lightly dressed. Just enough to add flavor, but there is no actual dressing feel to the salad. If you think you just could not possibly have a salad that isn't coated in
1 tsp Red Wine Vinegar
1/4 tsp Olive Oil
Yes, you read that right. I dressed my salad with just 1 1/4 tsp. of oil and vinegar. Simply combine the oil and vinegar. Then toss it in a big bowl with with the greens for your salad. It will coat your greens in an amazing flavor that will leave you wondering why you were ever skeptical. Seriously, try it.
Now for the rest of the salad:
2 Cups Salad Greens (any of your choice)
1 Tbs chopped Green Onion
2 oz Cooked Chicken, diced
1 Large Hard Boiled Egg, roughly chopped
1 oz Part Skim Mozarella Cheese (I used sliced string cheese)
Salt and pepper
Toss the greens with the dressing in a large bowl. Put the greens on a plate and top with the onion, chicken, egg and cheese. Add salt and pepper to taste. Because I'm a food snob to some degree, I'll add that you really should invest in a pepper mill so you can have fresh ground pepper. The flavor difference is amazing.
On the side I just had 8 spears of steamed asparagus. If you actually just counted the spears you will notice that two never made it to the plate. What can I say, I love asparagus.
Now, go enjoy a salad.