Do you have family or close friends that live far away and sometimes with all of life's "business" you struggle to keep connection constant? Well we have struggled in this same way and I have to confess that I am not always the best at creative solutions in this area.
It's so easy to get caught up in life and all of it's responsibilities, so it's really special to discover little ways to connect with those special people who are far away. Distance often causes us to miss out on a lot of special things like watching our nieces and nephews grow up so we definitely cherish our visits and all of the different opportunities to interact with them.
Recently, two of our nieces and one of our nephews saw a picture of our piglets and decided they wanted one. Of course, It just wasn't practical for them to own a 'pet pig' (awe c'mon, they don't take up much space!😉). So, Seth had the idea to pick a sow out of the bunch that we could raise for breeding and she could be their pig.
Our son, Liam with the new piglets.
We update them and answer their questions through videos and we have thoroughly enjoyed it. Below, you can take a look at one of the video updates we shared with them and see how we move the hogs through pastures that just needed a little something extra. After you watch, we'd love to hear how you shorten the distance by finding creative ways to connect. You can post in the comments section below, or email me with any questions or comments: firstname.lastname@example.org
Looking for Walnut Grove Pork? Find out all you need to know here
Seth, Raini, Liam Charise and Rhian Allen
Simple things are beautiful.
One of my favorite things about brown eggs, is how pretty they are. I think if I could get away with it, I would decorate my house with baskets of brown eggs. But, since I can't I'm just happy that I get to look them every day.
I've heard people say, "farm eggs are hard to peel" and "yah, but you can't really dye a brown egg". Well, farm eggs can be easy to peel, depending on how you prepare them and brown eggs make the prettiest colors when they're dyed, so I thought I would give you a couple of fun ideas to try.
First, the peeling...
So, when I boil my eggs, I wait till the water is boiling, then I carefully place the eggs in. I boil for 12 minutes, then immediately dump the hot water and cover them in cold water. As soon as that warms up, I dump it and cover in cold water again. I do this 2 or 3 times until the water remains cold.
I let them sit until the eggs are completely cooled off and they peel like a dream!
5 ways to dye your eggs naturally...
Have you ever been so busy that when you decided to dye eggs with the kids, you realized- Oops, you didn't even pick up a dye kit. Now what are you going to do? Or maybe your like me and you just love experimenting in the kitchen. Well, there are some fun options for natural dyes using plants that you probably have on hand, and I'll give you a quick overview here:
1)Use a plant based coloring kit for eggs- We used this kit for our eggs and it worked great. The colors are deep and turned out really nice. I have also used this brand of plant based dyes for frostings and it works beautifully. (And, in case you're wondering, it doesn't add flavor to your baked goods or frostings)
2) Purple cabbage for blue dye- (this will color in shades of blue similar to the above picture). Chop a purple cabbage (about 1 pound). Combine 1 quart of water, 1 Tablespoon Vinegar and 1 Tablespoon of Salt. Add cabbage and bring to a boil. Cover and Simmer for 30 minutes. Strain and use the liquid for dying your eggs.
3) Beets for Red - (this will color your eggs in shades similar to the dark reddish purple and light rose, above.) Take 1 to 2 beets and chop. Combine 1 quart of water, 1 Tablespoon Vinegar and 1 Tablespoon of Salt. Add beets and bring to a boil. Cover and Simmer for 30 minutes. Strain and use the liquid for dying your eggs. You can also use your prepared beet kvaas to dye your eggs - no prep needed, just soak in the kvaas until it reaches the desired color.
4) Turmeric - (this dye will color eggs in shades of yellow -see above photo) Combine 1 quart of water, 1 Tablespoon Vinegar and 1 Tablespoon of Salt. Add 6 tablespoons of turmeric powder and bring to a boil. Cover and simmer until turmeric dissolves.
5) Coffee- I know, they're already brown, but add this to your dye collection to get an even deeper shade of brown. Grind your coffee to a fine powder and combine 5 Tablespoons with a quart of water, 1 Tablespoon of vinegar and 1 Tablespoon of salt. Boil for 5 minutes and strain.
There are so many other options, you could try, so if you don't have something on hand, test what's in your cupboard...
Blackberries, Elderberries, Raddishes, and Yellow Onion Skins also make great colors. Any other ideas? I'd love to hear about them in the comments below.
Happy Easter from the 7U Ranch!
(Seth, Raini, Liam, Charise and Rhian Allen)
A dedicated mother and wife who has a passion for everything healthy and gift for simplifying that knowledge and making it applicable for others.