sweet stuff sunday!

Did you know yesterday was National Chocolate Cake Day?!?!? Well, it WAS. It was also my dad's favorite cake. Chocolate on chocolate. So.... mostly in his honor, but also because it was A NATIONAL HOLIDAY! Anyway, this cake was divine and I will be wearing stretchy clothes ally week because of this yumminess....

1 3/4 CUP all purpose flour
1 1/2 CUP sugar
1/2 CUP brown sugar
3/4 CUP cocoa or cacao
2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt (I used fine ground pink Himalayan)

Mix all dry ingredients above in a large bowl. Preheat oven to 350.

1/2 CUP oil (I used sunflower)
2 eggs
1 CUP sour cream
2 tsp vanilla

Mix oil, eggs, sour cream, & vanilla in large mixing bowl with stand or hand mixer for one minute.

Add dry ingredients to wet mixture, and spoon mix until just combined. Then add ONE CUP OF VERY HOT WATER. Mix for two minutes at medium speed.

Butter two round cake pans, pour half mixture in each, pop in the oven, and bake for 28-30 min. Toothpick test to make sure they're done.

Now while those are cooling, make the icing...
1 CUP butter softened
1/2 CUP heavy cream
1 C cocoa or cacao
3- 4 C confectioners sugar (more or less for your desired stiffness)

Mix with electric mixer...


After cakes have cooled, add icing... And




saturday snapshots

 wow! what day! It is late, and I am barely keeping my eyes open.... Just soaked in a lonnnnnng bath and am about to hit the hay with a heating pad ... 
we tilled and then bedded the garden plot....
compacted burn piles and we are close to being done for the year with them! I think we may have two more big ones before Spring hits...
isn't this exciting? and beautiful? and ohhhhhh how I love the smell of fresh earth! 
burn, baby, burn!

cleaned up all the horse manure form the fields....

cleared the path through the pines....
clean burned this ditch.....
 the 'life oak"....
 backside of the property... a year ago, this was completely inaccessible. 
 bedding for crops.....

 ...cut the lower limbs from these trees, but still have so many more to trim up....
 oh, how pretty! I am going to have a big lesson this year. And I have a feeling I am not gonna like it at times, but hoping to learn, grow, and respect gardeners much more after this first year of interning in this large garden...
 ...still lots more to do. It's all about the tedious cleanup around all the rest of the trees now. 

 I can't wait to continue to document how this project goes throughout 2018! Have a great Sunday!! oh - today was national chocolate cake day, so I guess tomorrow's sweet treat will be chocolate cake! Yummy.



weekend plans....

I have, year after year, shared my seed germination trials, plant hardening, and seedling transplants here only to be a little disappointed when harvest time comes around because I either got disinterested because the gratifying plant beauty didn't come fast enough, or I got sidetracked and let my garden go....

I prefer to share my struggles and my nuggets of wisdom that I gained getting through the disappointing or hard times, so that others might be able to use them...One thing I have learned in keeping this blog is we are all talented in ways that others might not understand or even know about, just as we are all messes in some way or another..and a nice healthy dose of Ryan Gosling never hurts.

This year I aim to be better. This year I am going under another's wing. This year I am interning for a pro. Working my ass off, if for nothing more than the investment in gardening knowledge and food for our table. This year I learn how to do it RIGHT. I will be held accountable by someone other than myself. I will have things expected of me.... Weeding, watering, nurturing, etc. I will be a student. I am excited, yet nervous.

Last weekend was the real beginning of this new chapter for me at the farm. Last year, I did the whole rain barrel thing, but too late in the year for my garden. This year we have started making a complete irrigation system with two 330 gal rain barrels that fill up completely with one good rain. This will be our sole source of water for the garden (hopefully). Barrels were tested out after the last rain, and both were filled to the brim (660 gallons!). This weekend we drain, till garden area again, and work on a few burn piles.

I will be sharing photos tomorrow evening (Saturday snapshots) of what we managed to get accomplished in a day! I have high hopes that you will be able to envision what we are so excited about!

happy friday! 




Tailwagger Tuesday!

Banjo is 7-8 years old and weighs about 70 lbs. He is a sweet tempered older boy who is fully vetted, neutered, microchipped, and up to date on all vaccines and heart worm/ flea prevention. He is quite active for an older dog. He chews on everything also so he needs to be crated when unsupervised indoors. He is house-trained, does well with children, and other dogs. He's a big talker, does great on a leash, and loves to go on long walks. He's been at the rescue for far too long and would love to find his furever home in 2018! Come walk him and meet this sweet fella today! He is available for reduced adoption fee of $100 if local to Athens/ Colbert area. For more info, send me a message using the contact form to the left or click HERE, and for previous "tailwagger" posts, click HERE


Monday, Monday!

Happy Monday y'all! I had a very eventful weekend that started last Thursday honestly... I mean I worked both Thursday & Friday, but we had a newbie pup escape the rescue and luckily we were able to trap him last night less than a half hour after setting, baiting and greasing up the trap! Whew! Bandit (the name we gave him) was on the lam for almost four whole days before we were able to get him back at the rescue and safe from harms way! Luckily his crossing over a major four lane highway several times a day didn't lead to a bad ending to this story....

Bandit came to us about a week before he escaped. So scared of everything and everyone that we literally had to carry this big boy outside in his interaction pen. So naturally when he escaped, anytime he would spot one of us, he would bolt.... BUT lucky for us, he knew where to get fed, however he was smart enough to scoot the food closer to so he could eat it without setting off the trap. Smart little bugger! Well, yesterday evening, another rescue volunteer (Christyn) and myself went out investigating... Speaking with the neighbors, learning his little routine... Apparently he was coming and going like clockwork from a specific area. We found his bedding site, the little path he was using, walked around and Christyn was tacking up flyers, and in my super imaginative mind, it occurred to me that it was quite possible Bandit had misunderstood our intentions....

I came up with this whole story about how once he saw the posters for "missing dog", he would then realize (and be happy about) that he was actually being sought because WE CARED ABOUT HIM. Something he had never experienced before.... :( Well, after this realization, he would then appease all us rescue workers and go be "tricked" by the trap and let us win. After all, now he knew we were just trying to help....

Back to the reality of the situation.... After our investigatory little trek around the neighborhood, and new findings of his path, we moved the trap, greased it up so it was hairtriggered, and within half an hour he was trapped! Whew!!! Perfect way to end the weekend and the made-up story almost seemed to be true... Ha!

Now back to all the farm updates..I started off the morning with pancakes and fakin'bacon....

The big building is undergoing some cosmetic changes. The chainlink is coming down, the rain barrels have been equipped with proper fittings for hoses, and all set for catching rain!

The farm underwent some major burns this weekend. Trees were also pruned and more new piles were made for future burns... It never ends, eh?

I spent alllllll weekend outside and my chapped and sunkissed face tells the story. It was perfect, 70+ degrees and most needed! I didn't bake anything yesterday, and I still haven't made it thrifting this year yet, but I've been kept happy with all this farm therapy. I'm so ready for Spring, and to see all these newly pruned trees in bloom!

Have a great week and I'll be back tomorrow with the Tailwagger Tuesday pup post!