Exploring the Human Condition: altered states of consciousness

Posts tagged ‘cooking’

Missing the 1800’s

One hundred years is a long time.  But 200 years later, the ways in which people live would be unrecognizable to a person living in say…  1850.   And here’s what I miss…

I miss early mornings in 1850.  In small towns, and small farms all over the United States, people woke the fluck up at a decent hour, even early!  The homes and the grounds literally came alive with activity.  People had animals – livestock in barns and pastures to look after.  The women had smaller fare, up closer to the house, and children to raise.

In my neighborhood today, 2018, people wake up early, but then the men leave.  They turn on big trucks with lights, and after a quick breakfast, they head out.  You can hear them moving down the roads all around us each morning, and then it gets quiet again.  I think most of the women and babies go back to bed for a little bit.

The early towns, especially as you went out west, were just stick buildings constructed out in the dust and the rocks, but each morning those towns came alive.  It was a big deal back in the 1800’s to “go to town.”  It usually meant a long trip down a bumpy road with a wagon, but no one minded.  Going to town was the ultimate fun.  It meant a break from farm chores and the normal grind.

People actually knew each other.  They actually looked at each other’s faces, and remarked, maybe smiled; they actually interacted.  Now, it’s so strange.  You can be in a room full of twenty people, and not one person will connect.   I live in a rural neighborhood, and it is almost 7 a.m. on a Friday in late March.  All you can hear now are the roosters, and they are everywhere.  I cannot imagine any people needing so many roosters, but they do.  It is a constant chorus of crowing, and the sound carries for a mile or so…

In the 1800’s, the people wore very amazing handmade clothing, and it was a true feat in itself if you could sew and make decent wearable clothing, all of which was done by hand.  They didn’t have sewing machines back then.  The clothing you wore protected you in all events, and women wore things in layers.  Now you grab a knit top of unknown content put together on a serger in China, and you’re ready to go!  Space clothes!

Most of all, I miss the horses.  I miss the countryside, the pretty things growing on the side of the road…  I miss the fact that children played in the fields and climbed in the trees and ran and ran for days…  free flowing streams that were clean to put your feet in…  Birds sang in profusion and bees buzzed at every flower.  And you could smell grandmother’s cooking all the way past the barn.  She looked real nice in that red calico apron she made last week.

And Grandpa was always around, working on something.  You could usually find him out in the old garage, tinkering around, or just standing there, looking out into space…  Or he would say “Let’s go, baby folks, let’s go into town!”  The old truck would rattle and roll, but we always made it somehow.  These new fangled mini-space rockets buzzing down the toll roads at high speeds just aren’t the same as Pa-Pa’s truck.  And they never will be.

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Wayside Oaks Organic Farm Update:

H E L L O and G O O D M O R N I N G!

Here are the latest updates from the new start-up organic farm down in Tejas!

Our main security/herding dog Biscuit has developed a nasty raspy cough, and he’s trying to spit out phlem. I suspect this is a case of Kennel Cough, or to be more exact, stress combined with poor diet, surrounded by so many other souls of equal or greater auras of fear… He also has diahrrea, most likely from jumping back into nutrient rich meal schedule and regular exercise. And stress.

Yesterday I was wiped out! haha So tired, and so was Biscuit. We did not even try to do the big walk, as we were quite late in even attempting it. So instead, before he was coughing, I just threw his heavy KONG ball only three times down the driveway. It was plenty for a rest day after so much drama. haha We hates the drama.

In trying to mix him a potion, something to coat his throat at least, I mixed up about 4 TBSP’s of organic agave syrup, into his clean stainless steel water bowl, with about 2 cups of clean and cold spring water. If we weren’t out of green tea, I would have brewed some for both of us of course! But surprisingly since I have never seen Buscuit refuse any food or drink, he turned up his nose to the cold water with agave. Hmmmm…

So I went to the pantry, and some kind love has sent us some gourmet chicken in water, so I took that and removing just a bit of the water for kitty Arnie, poured the entire can into Biscuit’s throat remedy. You can imagine that this time we had no trouble whatsoever. He looked at me after he finished with the sweetest eyes… Like he loves me…

I was also quite tired yesterday because the night before I had to totally brainstorm to come up with some reasonable solutions to different less-than-perfect situations here at the farm. I find that if you concentrate too much on what is not working for you, you tend to lose sight of what is. So without too much pre-judgment of the critical sort, I jumped in with all four feet and came up with WOOF! Yep, that’s it. Wayside Oaks Organic Farm. A sanctuary for unwanted or older farm animals. We do accept the occasional pup from time to time. haha But at this Cruelty-Free Oasis of Heaven, CATS RULE! haha We show the highest respect at all times for the smaller ones of us.

Since yesterday’s adventure seeing the baby goat with Biscuit, I am really excited, as if I don’t have enough to take care of at the moment… hahaha (Building an organic farm, farmhouse and Barn from nothing is not as easy as you might think.) An Aqua-Ponics Farm no less! Right this very second, these two pups, Biscuit and Summer, who are now both internationally known American Dog Representatives of the best sort… 🙂 are both spooning at the very foot of my little bed, so I will not notice them. So cute. They get away with a lot. So while they are quiet, I am about to research once again the feasibility of getting three does, female goats of one kind or another, I am not particular. We also like sheep very much! Whatever nice little flock we accumulate, it will be up to me, unless God sends me a shepherd angel manifest… to learn how to control Biscuit and Summer with the flock. I have seen videos of the men of Basque, the men of Scotland, the men of New Zealand with their herds and their dogs. But I cannot make a whistle loud enough to get their attention. So I am trying to imagine how I can signal them as they herd and protect our baby goats. Wow. I know. I just wanted to paint and to sew. To cook and to grow. I am now also Shepherd! We are so blessed.

Here is another amazing revelation. I knew it from watching Cesar Millan but it is truly one of the hardest lessons to comprehend correctly. I am projecting a great percentage of the behavior of my dog Biscuit, right into him whenever any particular situation might arise. His reaction is simply that, his re-action. I never thought of myself as nervous or anxious when visitors come unexpectedly, but I am. So he cannot differentiate like I do, all he knows is to show fear. He is getting that from me.

Today in the quiet of the morning, a UPS truck, BIG brown truck comes roaring down into our quiet circle. Biscuit barks once and stands at attention, as we were in the yard at the time. I stand straight also but facing him, and say, “Biscuit, NO! Biscuit, sit? with the end of the voice inflection going up in tone at the end, and it gets his attention, and he sits. He is learning, and so am I. He didn’t go running out to the front gate like a mad dog bent on blood. He just sat down and then looked back at the truck with his tongue hanging out, just watching. I have never seen him this chill before ever! haha The truck just cranked up and took off, the neighbor’s yellow lab sounding the alarm. Biscuit here at my feet, woke up, looked up, I said No, and he stopped. Just listened, with a relaxed look in his eyes, like, okay, she’s still on duty. Cool!

The main Farm Designer Cody has taken employment at a very famous and expensive subdivision/Ranch situation in west Austin, I think. I haven’t researched it yet. He’s making more at 23 years of age than I ever made per hour in my whole career in the legal field. The world is changing my friends, much for the better and not a moment too soon! Yes!

I’ve got the word out now that I am open to the idea of having women farmers/artisans/gardeners inquire about positions as work exchange for shelter and food. I prefer to think of it as family. But that remains to be seen. I do background checks.

This time it is all business. I want this venture to succeed as a model that can be used over and over anywhere in the world under any circumstance starting from scratch with what you have. But not an old timey farm like one might think. Not even like the Beekkman Boys farm. Nope, no way. This farm is called WOOF. We are Cruelty-Free, Free-Ranging for all species, to live together in sanctuary, unwanted farm animals primarily elders, or disabled, to live out their days in peace and contentment, free from worry of any sort. On Saturdays when I get the right staff in place, we will schedule particular groups of kiddos to come out to the farm and help us feed that morning, and also to tend the gardens. We can have a big picnic lunch at noon and the afternoon is free-time, do as you like. We will have lots of fun activities and parents can relax, have a massage, or take a pony and go for a ride down the old sandy carriage road behind the farm. I also plan to build an Earthship home, well, actually just help Cody build his. And small off-the-grid type cabins, spaced out for privacy, only one or two, so that we can rent them or use them for people to use that come here to heal. I love the idea that I am novice Curandera, and I must say, the beginning of such a venture is amazing, overwhelming at times, but so very much fun, it’s hard to put into words. Helping others is what I was always meant to facilitate, and this is my chance. And we’ll save the farm in the deal.

All farms need an old beat-up truck. Since Jim has been away, we have no farm truck. That is not good. Things must be moved and transported. I also want a small boat. But that will have to wait, unless some water sprite appears and shares her boat…

So I must go now, as we have a quiet sleeping house. It is about half-hour before noon. I can hear all the chimes and little bells ringing softly in the trees outside my front window. Today I build the studio. I’m about to wake people up and start moving things about as I have to get my desk in here. Setting it up in front of the big windows, for jewelry-making, sewing, and other wonderful things. I sell on ebay sometimes, but I want to be good enough to use Etsy.

I guess before I start going at this room, I’ll go back outside and work the front garden again. I can hear a bird of prey screaming high over the trees. WOW, he just got a LOT closer!

Gotta go, we got white kitties running amouk out there… PEACE!

False alarm, all is well. They (the two brother kittens, Arnie and Max) will have to learn about big birds, as we are going to be having some come to live here at the farm some day soon.

Today at Chez Cissy’s, we are cooking White Northern Beans. My first time actually. If I remember correctly, my grandmother would have cooked them with a ham bone. Since this farm is a Sanctuary, a Cruelty Free Place for the safety and happiness of all beings, I must devise another way to give them flavor. We already have some beautiful Genovese Basil that I could steal a few leaves from, a beautiful whole onion Cody brought in, which I intend to use in its entirety! And I ran across more garlic, just a bit left, yesterday hidden in the pantry, so that will help as well. It’s not Vegan, but I have some Hoison Sauce, so I will most likely use that, just a little, as well. I’m thinking black pepper. Some Spanish Olive Oil. Small shot of turmeric. Then we are going to explore making some “cornbread” and I use that term EXTREMELY loosely, because in fact, I will be replacing cornmeal in the recipe I choose with Amaranth Flour and Spelt Flour. My first on this too. I have no idea how this will go. Will be using eggs in this recipe, but Almond milk, not dairy. And just so you know, this is way more information than most chefs will share… So don’t pick on me if it doesn’t come out just perfect! haha

At least when Cody get’s in tonight late, he will have something good left waiting on the stove for him. I know he’s working hard. Probably harder than he ever has in his life. But he’ll have good equipment and experienced people around him. I gave him an old beat-up straw cowboy hat. He’s gonna need it.

Off to the front garden again. Trying to make a kitchen garden here, with herbs, tomatoes, potatoes, and such… We have lots of onions growing. The shade cloth purchased last month was meant to cover this kitchen garden as it is located right up next to the bright white house and the sandy soil gets far too hot for proper flowering of the plants. Yesterday I placed this shade cloth over my front studio windows because we have no AC unit at this time and this room heats up like a sauna in the summer! Happy Gardening People!

Mid-day siesta time...in Tejas

Mid-day siesta time…in Tejas

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