Milking My First Cow: Using FRESH Milk!

by Tammy Taylor

 

Recently we had a cow give birth to a calf and although she gave us a fine, healthy heifer calf, she was having a difficult time with her calf emptying one of her teats. Each day that one teat grew bigger and we’d hoped that the calf would eventually latch onto it like she was the others (we’ve had that circumstance in the past and it’s always worked out fine) But the teat began to get so full it was large & tight and too difficult for the calf to attempt to nurse it, so she just didn’t.  I was worried about the cow developing mastitis so I knew I needed to take action.  I’ve never milked a cow before. Ever. Until now. Ain’t nothin’ to it, y’all!  I feel like an official country woman now!

Using FRESH MILK - I'd always wanted to try milking one of our cows to get fresh milk for our family, see what I did with the FRESH MILK!  #TaylorMadeRanch

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Summer Cooking: Pasta Salad FAST!

by Tammy Taylor

 

So…  Y’all know earlier this week I shared with you my procedure for making FlavorBombs – ice-cube sized bundles of deliciousness that include chopped fresh herbs and garlic from my garden topped with olive oil & frozen in an ice cube tray.  I’ve used these FlavorBombs to quickly & easily make my brown rice much more flavorful but today I’m going to be making pasta salad.  During these dog days of summer I’m always looking for cooler dining choices that don’t require lots of time in the kitchen.  BOOM!  Enter this pasta salad made super-fast with my premade olive oil & fresh herb FlavorBombs!

During summer I'm looking for cooler food that doesn't require much time in the kitchen.  Love this pasta salad made super-fast with FlavorBombs! #TaylorMadeRanch

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Homestead Hack: Clock Radio – Use What You’ve Got!

by Tammy Taylor

 

On our nightstand RancherMan & I had one of those clock radios that will also charge your cell phone, and while it worked great for quite a while as a clock radio we don’t keep our cell phones in our bedrooms – it’s an off-limits place for cell phones with all the push notifications that might disrupt a good night’s sleep.  As the clock radio unit got older it became more & more difficult to get the dial exactly on the station where the radio station signal was good & crisp – we decided perhaps we needed to upgrade to a digital dial to make getting to the radio station a little easier.  But when we were pricing clock radios with digital dials we were surprised that they were kinda pricy.  Then we put our heads together and came up with the PERFECT solution.  Use whatcha got is what I always say!  Check out this Homestead Hack that worked so well for us.

We needed a new clock/radio, we put our heads together & came up with the PERFECT solution. Check out this Homestead Hack! #TaylorMadeRanch

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Fresh Herb & Olive Oil ‘FLAVOR BOMBS’

by Tammy Taylor

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I’ve had more than my fair share of difficulty in the veggie garden this year, the torrential rain has made growing veggies all but impossible – then the heat & grasshoppers got their turn at decimating our veggie garden.  (Yes thank you, I’ll take some cheese with my whine, and I’ll have it on the verandah if you please… 😉 )  But there has been a ray of sunshine in my gardening endeavors this year – my edible landscape!  I’ve had some herbs such as rosemary, thyme, sage and basil survive the weather and the grasshoppers.  Now given the fact that I won’t be harvesting & enjoying anything from my veggie garden soon, I’m sure having a blast experimenting with ways to fully use these aromatic herbs.  I’d heard before about making ‘Flavor Bombs’ from various herbs and olive oil, so I figured I’d give it a try.  Turns out I really like them!

'FLAVOR BOMBS' made from minced herbs and olive oil makes it easy to have your own convenient flavoring right in your own freezer! Check it out. #TaylorMadeRanch

 

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Fall-Back Friday: MYO Fat-Free Instant Pudding Mix

by Tammy Taylor

 

It’s really heating up here in NE Texas, our temps have gone to the 100 degree mark with about a million percent humidity – WHEW!  With heat like this it’s more enjoyable to eat cool or cold foods, so we’re focusing on salads, sandwiches & colder foods to ease the discomfort.  We enjoy ice cream for dessert during the dog days of summer to cool us from the inside out, but c’mon – eating ice cream several times a week can’t be the healthiest thing in the world.  So these days I’m making ice cream using healthier ingredients like frozen bananas, fat-free milk and instant pudding mix.  But I didn’t want to keep buying boxes of instant pudding so I learned how to make it myself!  And to celebrate Fall-Back Friday, I’ll share it with you today.  Check it out, y’all!

I'm making ice cream using healthier ingredients like frozen bananas, fat-free milk and instant pudding mix.  But I didn't want to keep buying boxes of instant pudding so I learned how to make it myself! #TaylorMadeRanch

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Wordless Wednesday: Tree-Lined Road To My Heart

by Tammy Taylor

 

Wordless Wednesday: Tree-Lined Road To My Heart #TaylorMadeRanch

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Vegetable Garden Update: July

by Tammy Taylor

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Well, well, well, what a year it’s been!  First our area of NE Texas was deluged with record weeks-long rain & flooding AFTER I planted my tender seedlings this spring of course and none of them made it.  So when the rain broke I planted seeds directly into the garden, and of course the flooding rain came back killing them as well before they even got a start.   Not to be deterred I planted yet a third time, in some cases buying young seedlings since there was no longer enough time for a plant to germinate, grow & produce before the season was up.  Then came the Texas summer heat & grasshoppers!  REALLY??!  It’s almost like Mother Nature has decided I shouldn’t have a garden this year.  But I’m a pretty determined gal – see how I’ve fought back…

Come with me for a stroll through my veggie garden.  There are some difficulties but some successes as well! #TaylorMadeRanch

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Preserving The Harvest: Dehydrating Onions

by Tammy Taylor

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Gardening is a fun hobby, but c’mon there’s lots of work involved too.  From planting seeds or tender seedlings to standing under that hot summer sun watering, weeding and harvesting.  Seeing that basket of fresh healthy produce is enough to make it all worthwhile of course, but oftentimes your harvest comes all at once as feast or famine.  After putting in all of that tender loving care to your precious garden it’s important to make sure none of your hard works goes to waste.  For instance I harvested my onions when their growing time was up, but how to make sure a whole garden full of onions can be enjoyed instead of being sat aside deteriorating until they’re only compost worthy?   You can bet your hat I won’t be letting my hard work go to waste!

Preserving The Harvest: ONIONS.  Don't distress over that glut of onion harvest, preserve it for future cooking!  See what I did.  #TaylorMadeRanch

 

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Homestead Hack: Deter Ants Naturally

by Tammy Taylor

I hate ants.  H-A-T-E.  But when you plant your new home right smack dab in the middle of a cow pasture ants are what you’ll often get.  Recently I was on the front porch tending to my edible landscape garden and I saw a line of ants marching across the porch.  As I followed the line I was dismayed to see that they were entering our home through the weep hole in the brick.  I knew that meant it was only a matter of time before they started showing up in the house.  Oh the horror! Maybe they’ll show in the cupboards, maybe the bathrooms.  Maybe even the master closet crawling on our clean clothes!  (yes, they frequent all those places!)  But I’m about to share a helpful homestead hack with ya that will help you deter ants naturally…

Ants are making their way into our home, I don't want to lay out poison. What's a crunchy-green country girl to do?? Check this Homestead Hack! #TaylorMadeRanch

 

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Homemade Chicken Pot Pie… From SCRATCH!

by Tammy Taylor

A few days ago RancherMan & I were delighted to receive a visit from two of our children and  two of our grandchildren.  For some reason I seem to always stress about the food when we have company – what to serve?  Will there be enough?  Will they like it?  On this day I was hoping to make something in the slow cooker so that I could spend more time visiting with our kids and grandbabies.  I decided on an inexpensive $5 whole chicken because I knew I could make a delicious Slow-Cooker Chicken, only I’d leave out the heavy spices for the grandbabies’ sake.  Our chicken dinner was delicious and after we all ate I pulled the meat from the bones & cooked the carcass into healthy chicken broth (6 pints!) and sectioned the leftover meat into three hefty meal-sized portions for RancherMan & me.  Now that’s a lot of mileage from one $5 chicken!  With one of the three portions of leftover meat I decided to make some homemade chicken pot pie for supper.

I Made Chicken Pot Pie from scratch using leftover Chicken. I Made The Pie Crusts & Cream Of Chicken Soup From Scratch Too.  Easy & DELICIOUS! #TaylorMadeRanch

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