You can find Grama Sue's Rainbow Eggs at:

The Hy Vee on Agency in Burlington, IA


Wednesday - Friday 9am to 1pm at the farm 1/2 mi east of the Nauvoo-Colusa Jr. High then 3/4 mile North on 1050.

Wednesday 3-7 pm at the Painted Corners on HWY 96 in Lomax, IL


7 - 11 am Keokuk Farmer's Market at the mall

Friday, August 31, 2012

Rainy Day Plans

FINALLY! Yesterday I finished my assessing job for 2012. One more year to go, then I can get on with my real life :) But, for the time being I get about a 3 month break. I'm hoping to have the time to write a little here every day, but I don't know. Grampa Tom will be helping a neighbor in the fields as soon as we dry out from Isaac. Welcome to the Midwest Isaac!

We need rain, but not nearly as badly as those to the south or east of us. We've done  a lot of watering regardless! During the really hot part of the summer, it didn't matter how much we watered, stuff was just having a hard time growing. the last couple of weeks have been much better. Just hope the markets hang in there for a while yet.

Grampa Tom says he's going to let me sleep in tomorrow because of the rain. I get to spend the morning sharpening knives and cleaning out the freezer so that we can butcher somewhere around 25 chickens tomorrow afternoon. We bought 75 Welsummer chicks last spring. The  cockerels  are big enough to butcher right now. We have to get them done now or they will be way to big by the time we get to them after harvest. We will keep a few cockerels and all of pullets for breeding purposes. These chickens lay a beautiful chocolate colored egg.

Maybe I'll take a few pictures and post them tomorrow.

God Bless You All!

~Grama Sue

Monday, August 13, 2012

Cleo - Chloe?

Our new puppy! Cleo - Chloe? My granddaughter named her, but kept calling her both names. I like the sound of  Chloe better, but Cleo means the Father's Glory. I'm confused. Never let a 5 y/o name a dog. I'm actually in favor of Rainbow for a white dog, but that's been vetoed by everyone. :(

My daughter just happened to be looking for a Great Pyrenees when Molly died and ran across a great deal on purebred, unpapered pups. We had her pick one up for us when she went to pick up hers. Gave us an awesome excuse to take a day off in the middle of market season to go see her new house and visit with her family! We hadn't seen them since the middle of June. Now if we could just manage to see the East Coast branch!

Cleo - Chloe did very well on the ride home. She got rather anxious when we drove into a heavy storm, but as soon as it subsided, she settled down. We didn't get home until 9:30 and since it was raining, we decided she'd have to come in for the night. 

Lady (our other Great Pyrenees) was so excited to see her! She was following us around and even wanted to come inside with her. No way! Cleo-Chloe will be an outside dog very soon. I'm not having a houseful of gigantic dogs in this little trailer. Blue on the other hand isn't terribly impressed. He'll just have to get used to her!

Cleo-Chloe thinks the dog in the mirror is a playmate. It is funny, but has to be discouraged. A sliding mirror door is just to fragile to wrestle doggy style with. 

We will see how she does tomorrow with the chickens. 

I've been wanting to have a side-kick type of dog for quite a while. Since Cleo-Chloe rides so well, I think she will be come my personal companion. 

God Bless You All!

Love, Grama Sue

Monday, August 6, 2012

Stevia Cuttings

Yesterday my stevia plants were getting pretty big, so I decided to harvest some. While I was at it, I decided to take some cuttings.

I've done this before, but it didn't work as well as I wanted. I did go from one plant to 4, but I was hoping for more.  I found this video on youtube.com so I decided to try it. I'll let you know what happens!

So far, I've kept all my stevia in pots. Since I had so few, I wanted to bring them all in come fall so I didn't bother to plant them in the ground. I did set some other pots beside them and managed to create a couple more plants by taking long branches and burying them into them. I'm hoping to get at least 5 more plants from this so I took the plunge and put one plant in the ground. It will probably grow much better there.

I need to grow a ton of this stuff! I tried making pickled beets with it a couple of weeks ago. I gave up pickled beets years ago because of all the sugar. Pickled beets with stevia are awesome! 

God Bless You All!

~Grama Sue

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Crystal Mushroom

The other day on Facebook, there was this cool picture of crystal mushrooms for the garden. This weekend I had the opportunity to hit a couple of yard sales and TA-DA!

Here is my version of the crystal mushroom. I don't think I'm going to put it in the garden though. To pretty to expose it to the elements like that. 

I took a couple of plastic wine glasses put one upside down on a cap from the old gas stove, ( I just couldn't bear to throw them away. Knew they would come in handy for something.)  filled it with Christmas tree mylar and glued it down. Then I put a little bit of beading along the edge to hide the glue. Next, I glued another wine glass to the bottom of the upside down glass and glued that glass to the upside down plastic crystal bowl. I didn't like the glue showing, so I painted the top red and sprinkled some glitter on it. Pretty huh?

I've got enough to make one more. Maybe I'll take them to the fall market in Burlington or to a craft show sometime. Think I could get $5 out of it?

God Bless You All!

~Grama Sue

Friday, August 3, 2012


For those of you that don't know, our grand old lady Molly has passed away. When she came to us 3 years ago, she was 7. She lived to be 10. A very old age for this breed of dog. Molly was  incredibly sweet. She loved kids and hated coyotes and coons with a passion.

She has not been in good shape for several months now, but that soft hearted Grampa Tom couldn't bear to put her down. We have a place under the house where the dogs go to get out of the weather. For about a week before she died, we would hear her in there, but we didn't see her. 

The night before she died, she came out to see us one last time. She looked awful. Grampa and I tried to doctor her, but there really wasn't anything anyone could have done for her. Grampa was going to take her to the vet in a couple of days if she didn't improve. I told him I didn't think there was anything the vet could do for her either, but he just couldn't bear the thought of putting her down.

The next morning, we found her between my car and the gardens. Grampa had to wait until I moved the car to be able to get her out to bury her. I had several things I needed to put in it and every time I walked by her I could not help but thank her for not dying under the house! She was always to thoughtful!

Rest in peace Molly ... We will miss you.

God Bless You All!

~Grama Sue

Thursday, August 2, 2012

The Terrible Tragedy of the Healthy Eater

This is so funny! My grandpa lived to be 90 on junk food, cigarettes and scotch. I love growing my own food, and I try to eat healthy, but the most important thing to consider when eating is, "Did I thank God for this?"

 The Terrible Tragedy of the Healthy Eater


Our carrot crop has been sad looking this year. Grampa Tom can usually grow some pretty carrots in his fancy raised beds, but this year they are either skinny, leggy, buggy or split. We've been selling the fatter skinny ones, but no one will buy stuff that looks like this! It's just near impossible to keep the beds wet enough in this hot dry weather.

Not all is lost though. We generally eat what we can't sell, and what we won't eat, the chickens love! I've been cutting off the buggy spots and  the splits to can them. 

I cut them into small chunks. Fill pint jars with them and then cover them with water and add 1/2 tsp of sea salt. Pop them into the pressure canner and cook at 10 lbs for 25 minutes. These will taste great with roasts or in soups or just as they are next winter :)

This morning, I planted some more in my mound garden for a fall crop. I'm hoping I can mulch them really well so we can have fresh carrots all winter long. We'll see!

God Bless You All!

~Grama Sue