Breakfast & Dinner

I’m sure many of you are wondering what happened to those two cute little pigs named Breakfast & Dinner.  Come on, you knew this day would come folks.

June 2018
November 2018

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There are a couple graphic butchery photos below, so just stop now if that bothers you or scroll really fast.

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Breakfast & Dinner lived a very happy, albeit short,  life at Spring Creek Acres.  They rooted up acres of pasture and enjoyed a non-GMO diet.  The sisters frolicked about and happily grunted when Farmer Shawn brought them treats every day and sprayed them down on hot days.  They grew bigger and bigger and bigger, until one day Farmer Shawn decided they were ready to become bacon, sausage, and other tasty delights.

Skinning (and no that’s not the same sled from the previous post…we have multiple pink sleds)
Sawed in half

I’m the first to admit, the killing and processing part is not fun and I was not overly involved.  Once everything was chilled and cut into less recognizable pieces, I joined the party.

Shawn sold two half pigs and invited the buyers to join in the processing.  Talk about knowing where your food comes from!

Let the butchery begin
Pat grinds meat for sausage as Heidi looks on

As you can see, we like sausage.  With some of our meat, we made Jalapeno breakfast sausage, Italian sausage, and German sausage.  I grew up eating smoked Geman sausage at my grandparents’ house on Sundays, so I was trying to recreate that.

10+ pounds of sausage meat ready for seasoning
Packaged sausage ready for the freezer
German sausage in casing ready for smoking
German sausage after smoking, ready for Christmas Eve dinner in Fresno

All in all, the processing of the two pigs took about a week and yielded over 300 pounds of meat.  Shawn also cured bacon and smoked the hocks.

Slicing Pat’s bacon
Mmmmm, bacon
Pasta with Italian sausage

We now have a freezer full of pork and chicken for the coming year, plus a bit of elk from the neighbor.  Raising and processing your own food takes a lot of time and effort, but it tastes so good.  Cheers to Breakfast & Dinner!

Layers

Yesterday afternoon it was sunny, so I suggested to Shawn that we walk to the mailbox.  This is a nice 1.7-mile roundtrip.  I put on a cotton/wool long sleeve base layer shirt with a fleece shirt over, thick athletic pant, knit gloves, and a beanie hat.  By the time we got down the driveway, which is a feat in itself, the sun went behind a cloud and I was cold.

Today, Shawn suggested a walk.  I looked out the window at the gray day and gave him the side eye, so he pulled out his phone to check the weather.  It was 36 degrees and the peak of the heat for the day.  I added some layers to the previous day’s outfit.  Long sleeve base layer shirt again, sweatshirt, fleece jacket, athletic pants, sweatpants, white cotton gloves under my knit gloves, and the beanie hat.  Instead of turning right at the end of our driveway to go to the mailbox, we turned left to go up the steep hill.  Now I had too many layers!  This matching the weather, the workout, and the layers is a delicate science that I need to perfect.

As seen on our walk:

We’ve had our first two snow events for the year.  The first dropped about 5 inches of snow after Thanksgiving.  It was enough snow to pull out the sled and find a mild downhill in our front yard.  Shawn also managed to pile together a snowman on the deck.  The first snow is so pretty because there’s no dirt mixed with it.

Black walnut tree

The weather station covered in snow. A good shake of the pole got the wind meter working again.

I found a few things to gather on the property.  We have a black walnut tree, and this is our harvest from November.  I was surprised by how many we got because I saw so few on the tree.  After shelling them, we ended up with about two cups of nut meat.  Since there were so few, we enjoyed them raw as a snack.  Next year we will hopefully have more so we can do some baking with them.  Very tasty!

Rosehips are purported to be high in vitamin C and we have a lot of wild rose bushes on the property.  I read they are best picked after the first snow.  Unfortunately, the deer ate all the conveniently located hips.

I’ve been enjoying my new sewing room.  A couple of years ago, I made my grandson a set of mini advent stockings, so I had to make some for my new granddaughter too.  Twenty-four little stockings stitched, trimmed, turned and in the mail in time for December 1st.

Ready for the countdown to Christmas!

Well, it’s 4:30 PM and dark outside, so time to put on another layer…