Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Say What?

I have no opions of late. No great revulations or great discoveries.

I spend my days working, and when not at work I'm planning cub scout activities. And in the spare time i find i've been self teaching myself the guitar.

I'm mostly organized for the holidays. Just have to send out my holiday cards and a couple of packages.

So unltil i have something more to say enjoy listening to what a fox may say....

Monday, November 25, 2013

Lost and Found

I was lost, missing something in my life.

I found it when I started volunteering for my local scouting group.

I have been missing being involved in scouting for 11 years. But I'm back now.

My plan was to help with the cub scout group. Taking a back seat type role this year as the assistant leader, being the extra eyes and help with working with the youth. Well that plan failed. I along with the head leader have great enthusiasm and have developed a head team of sorts.

We work hard to provide an exciting and energetic program, keeping a group of 8-10 year olds busy and engaged can be tough at times.

One thing we've worked into our program is geocaching. The kids love it! Treasure hunting in this new high tech age!

I'm fired up and excited, maybe even more than the kids.

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

2 for 1 Wednesday

So its official, this year I will be a cub leader. Meetings start in two weeks with the kids. I'm excited to be back in scouting.

Two week ago I attended a fundraiser for our local animal shelter. For a donation you could get a professional photo taken with your pet. Unfortunately they didn't have a great turn out but I got some great pictures of the dogs (and me).

Me and the dogs, Finnegan, Lady & Molly
Finnegan, mutt(germand shepherd and australian shepherd) 7 minus 2 months yrs old

 Lady, Standard Silver Poodle, 7 3/4 yrs old

Molly, Border Collie, 14 3/4 yrs old

Molly, Border Collie, 14 3/4 yrs old

Death Becomes the Turkeys

Last Saturday was the end of the turkey's living life. They now will live out the remainder of their exsistance in our freezers until they are consumed.

My brother and dad and my brothers father -in-law were in charge of killing them and de-feathering and gutting. I and mom were in charge of packaging and grinding up 2 birds for ground turkey.

My brother and dad were surprised how strong the birds were. Well duh, these arent spring chickens we're dealing with. For the most part killing them went on without a hitch until the last bird, when Nick didn't quite have it killed by ringing its neck and when they chopped the head off....blood sprayed everywhere....but i guess one bird out of 10 isn't too bad???

Plucking is an area that needs improvement. We did the water dips and had a machine to take the feathers out easier but I found it messed up the skin too much and one bird even lost its skin -completely but mom took that bird and we ate it on Monday -tasted like turkey!  So if anyone has any tips on an easier plucking method I'm all ears.

Gutting went well too. Except dad isn't as tough as he says he is and was a little green when he decided to step in when Nick (my brother) took a break.

We also had the "help" of a couple young folk, Nick's in-laws were babysitting a 8 and 6 year old and they jumped right in to help and jumped from one thing to another. They were right into the whole process and was quite a learning adventure for them. They played with the guts separating the organs, playing with the leg tendons to make the foot open and close. Their parents thanked us for letting them help out saying its important to understand where our food comes from, which is something I agree with.

I forgot that raw meat smell was like when we were grinding them up in my kitchen...grinding went well with the help of my kitchen aid stand mixer with the meat grinder attachment. We did loose a tad bit of meat when mom used a wooden spoon and it got chewed up in the grinder...oops. And I only gagged one when I was trying to remove a blood cot from one of the bird's legs -one of my birds had been limping the last couple of days...I had to call one of the guys in to butcher the clot out.

All in all it was a sucessful turkey raising project. Our largest bird was 18 pounds and smallest 12 pounds, most averaged 16 pounds. And because of 3 birds dying and our start up costs the birds cost us $3.21 a pound. Next year we should be down around 2.20 a pound mark, which is a decent price for fresh turkeys around here.

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Turkey Time

The turkeys die this saturday coming. They're nearly 16 weeks old, and its time before they get too big and wont fit in the freezer or worst in the roast pan. Its been an interesting venture being a back yard turkey farmer. Yes i still have my bird phobia, though its tiggered more by smaller flighty or unpredictable birds. Now that they dont jump at me i find the turkeys and i get along better. All in all i say I've had a pretty successful summer fattening them up, we haven't even killed them and mom is talking about next year. We shall see how the kill and butchering goes this weekend before we make any plans.

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Future advice

I just read this article on Huffington Post http://www.huffingtonpost.com/ferrett-steinmetz/dear-daughter-i-hope-you-have-awesome-sex_b_3755185.html. It's basically a letter from a father to a daughter about life, growing up, discovering yourself, sex, and the hopes the father or any parent may have for their kids.

I've save the words to hopefully recall upon and use in the future, when I need to pass on some advice or just express my hopes.

Thursday, August 1, 2013

With Hope They Waited

Over 3 years ago now, a man was killed in a fire just north of my home town. With him lived alot of dogs, most were the unwanted pets of others that he would take in and care for. When news of his death hit the animal welfare rescues and groups, many volunteers banded together to help the now orphaned dogs.

The author of this book, Marilyn Dickie, was one of the kind hearted people that adopted one of the many dogs we rescued. Upon hearing about the journey these dogs have gone through she took it upon herself to compile a memoir of the rescue of the dogs from Mile 26.

I am delighted to have had the opportunity to house many of the rescues at my kennel as they were being transported to shelters across Ontario. Marilyn asked a couple of us "angels" to write a little something about our part in the events that unfolded; so I am also happy that I will be forever published in my four pages in this book.

If anyone would like a copy you can email withhopetheywaited@hotmail.com with your name, address, and number of copies you would like. Books are 20.00 each plus shipping. Payments can be made by cheque or e-transfer -which can be arranged once contact has been made with the mentioned email. 100% of the profits are being donated back to non-profit animal rescues in Ontario.

(disclaimer updated aug 18 2013: books by email are 20.00, I had posted that they we're 15.00 as that is what is quoted on the last page of the book on how to order more copies; Marilyn asked me to change this post to the "correct" price. I appologize for any confusion as I was just taking the info that was printed in the book.)