Mother’s Day and Meringue Bars

I hope everyone had a great Mother’s Day! I know I did. I know Mother’s Day has come and gone, but, I made the conscious decision to post this after Mother’s Day for a very good reason.

Mother’s Day is a hard day for me. I feel the absence of my mother the most at this time of year. I knew that I needed to just relax and take time away from the internet to enjoy the day. My family spoiled me, and I mean SPOILED me. My husband took me shopping for all my favorite things; books, planner supplies and flowers for the yard. When I thought the day couldn’t get better my husband surprised me with the video game I have been dying to play. (Don’t judge, once a geek always a geek) My family did a good job giving me a good day.

I couldn’t just ignore my mother though. I knew I wanted to do a post in honor of her and to mark the day. So, I thought long and hard about what recipe my mother would enjoy the most. I flipped through the old recipe tin and found the holy grail of my mother’s recipes.

Meringue Bars.

I remember very clearly how much she loved this dessert. These were VERY popular at family functions and my mother would make them often at home for a treat. The taste is similar to blondies. They have a chewy texture and a sweet meringue topping that melts in your mouth. They are DIVINE.

They were an instant hit with my family. Even my pickiest eater, Ben, has stated that they are his “most favorite thing ever.” Probably the greatest review I’ll ever get.

It’s an extremely easy recipe and doesn’t take long to prepare. The original recipe called for oats in the batter but, my husband and kids HATE oats so I left them out. I might revisit the recipe later and add them in but, they came out great without them.

First, Preheat your oven to 325F and generously butter a 9″ x 13″ baking dish.

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Next, I took a wire mesh strainer and sifted together 1 1/4 cups flour, 3/4 teaspoon baking powder, and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Set aside.

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Take 3/4 cup softened butter (margarine is also acceptable)

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And toss it in a mixing bowl with a 1/2 cup each of brown sugar and white sugar.

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Using a hand mixer, because I’m lazy, I beat the ingredients until they were well combined.

I then added a teaspoon of vanilla

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I then added the eggs, one at a time beating well between each addition. (I didn’t get a photo because it’s difficult to photograph with one hand)

Now we can add in the dry ingredients a little at a time, mixing well. I did this step by hand and forgot to snap a pic. I never said I was a professional, HA!

Once everything is combined pour the batter into your greased baking dish and smooth it out so it’s nice and even.

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Now that our batter is ready we can start on the topping! Separate 2 egg whites into the bowl of a stand mixer.

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Using the whisk attachment, beat the egg whites at medium to high speed until frothy.

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Next, with the mixer still going, add in a cup of  brown sugar a tablespoon at a time and beat on high speed until glossy and the whites form stiff peaks. This takes about 2- 2 1/2 minutes.

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Isn’t it beautiful?

Now, GENTLY, spread the meringue over the batter in your baking dish. Take your time and get it nice and even.

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Bake in a 325 degree oven for 30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

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Allow the baking dish to cool before cutting, If you can manage to cut the bars without crumbling the meringue please, let me know. I made a few batches to try and get a nice cut with out crushing the topping. I failed.

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Let it be known I am not a professional! Presentation is NOT my forte. That being said these came out tasting great and I know my mother would have LOVED them.

See below for the whole recipe!

Meringue Bars

Bars

1/2 cup granulated sugar

1/2 cup brown sugar

3/4 cup softened butter or margarine

1/2 teaspoon salt

2 large eggs

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 1/4 cup flour

3/4 teaspoon baking powder

Directions

Preheat oven to 325F

Butter a 9″ x 13″ baking dish generously. In a mixing bowl sift together flour, salt and baking powder. Set aside.

In a separate bowl beat together butter, sugar and brown sugar until well combined, add vanilla and beat well. Add eggs one at a time beating well between each addition.

Add dry ingredients a little at a time, mixing well. Spread batter evenly in baking dish.

Meringue Topping

2 egg whites

1 cup brown sugar

Directions:

Place egg whites in a stand mixer. Using the whisk attachment beat on medium to high speed until frothy. Add brown sugar a tablespoon at a time beating on high until the egg whites are glossy and form stiff peaks.

Spread topping over the batter and bake for 30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

Did you try this recipe? Let me know on Instagram! Find me at @lazyhousewife86

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Happy February!

Happy February! It feels like January lasted forever! But, here we are, February 2nd, Groundhog Day. Most people are lamenting the fact that the ground hog saw his shadow this morning, but, did you know that even though today is considered the middle of winter, it is considered the beginning of spring by many Pagans and Wiccans?

Today is also Imbolc, a very quiet holiday that is perfect for reflection and planning.

For my family this is the time of year when garden plans are started, and projects for warmer weather are mapped out. Seeds are blessed, workspaces are cleansed and equipment is prepared for the coming planting season.

It’s very hard to think spring when the world is still buried under ice and snow but, if you know where to look you can find spring everywhere. Birds have begun to return and have taken up residence in our garage. Our flock of chickens have started blessing us with eggs once again due to the noticeably longer days. Those eggs are a welcome sight after not having them for a good stretch of time.

We were so desperate for eggs we caved and bought some from the grocery store. They definitely didn’t compare to fresh eggs from my own yard.

Since we woke up to a blanket of snow my middle child and I did some crafts to observe the day and kill some time.

First we made Brigid’s cross from pipe cleaners!

Then, for the birds that returned early we made some bird feeders to hang near the garage.

Our evening will be spent together, my kids will be encouraged to play without electronics and my bus and I will be working on plans for the month and beyond. Even though our homestead is small ( the only livestock we keep is poultry) it takes a great deal of work.

Does your family observe Imbolc? What traditions do you have?

Blessed Be!

Sarah

Aka, The Lazy Housewife

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The Holiday Whirlwind….

The holidays have finally passed, the month of December was a busy and exhausting month for my family! My every day was filled with some sort of festivity related task from decorating the tree, to moving the damn elf, to the endless baking that consumed my kitchen.

My baby girl turned two years old 😭😭😭

She’s no longer a baby, and that makes me sad. They really do grow up fast. She’s joyful and always lights up the room. The greatest surprise I’ve ever received was this little munchkin.

My middle child has adjusted to pre-k and looks forward to school. I hope she never loses that.

Ben has decided he wants to be a YouTuber, he was upset when I told him he had to wait a few years. Hah, this kid kills me.

One of the highlights of December was taking Ben to see Star Wars at the cinema. It was his first time seeing a Star Wars movie on the big screen, and it’s something that I’ll never forget.

Our little backyard homestead grew by two feathered feet at the beginning of the year, we took in this handsome cemani/easter egger mix cockerel. He was placed in his own coop with his own flock of ladies.

My goal is to hatch out some chicks this year!

I’ll end this post with the collage of my #bestnine2017

I can’t wait to see what I can capture this year!

Happy New Year!

Lots of Love,

Sarah, The Lazy Housewife

Mama’s Raw Apple Cake

I’ve been in such a funk lately. I haven’t wanted to do anything at all. I’ve been meaning to post this recipe for weeks now and just haven’t been able to focus enough to finish it. Which is a bummer because it’s such a good recipe!

I’m also currently unable to post from my laptop. I don’t have a proper office space… yet. It’s such a pain typing everything out on my phone and then having my phone kicked out of my hand by a nursing baby, or, accidentally trashing the post.

But, this recipe was one of Mama’s favorites and I’m determined to share it with you!

I still remember the last time my mother made this for my siblings and I. We had picked up crates of apples from a local orchard to make pies, apple sauce and apple cake with. Our Pastor’s wife even came down to help because my mother’s illness was slowing her down a lot. Even though my mother was sick at the time it is still a pleasant memory.

As I pulled my ingredients together my mind wandered to that day. I remember Mama showing me how to chop the apples as she hummed along to the country music playing over the radio. She truly loved cooking and baking. It’s easy to see where my love of food came from. She gave me a strong foundation when learning to cook. I hope my kids have this love of cooking as well. My oldest seems the most interested in learning to cook. He loves watching Food Network to the point I had to download the app so he could stream his favorite shows. Chopped, The Pioneer Woman, and Halloween Wars. He melts my heart.

My mother’s recipe is extremely old. I made a couple adjustments because of personal preference and what I had on hand at the time. First, gather your ingredients, right away you can see I swapped the margarine for butter.

Next, peel, core, and chop your apples. I used Granny Smith because that is what I had. My mother swore by Cortland apples for all of her baking but, any tart baking apple will work for this recipe.

Next, using a mesh strainer over a separate bowl we are going to sift together our flour..

Baking soda…

Salt…

And cinnamon!

Now sift!!!!

Now take your softened butter and toss it in your mixer, save the wrapper for later.

Turn the mixer on low and start creaming the butter, after a minute or two gradually begin adding the sugar…

Keep the mixer going until the butter and sugar is all creamed together. It should look nice and fluffy like this…..

Now you need two eggs….

I love that pretty greenish-blue color some of my hens produce. We have a moderate flock of backyard poultry and I don’t think I will ever go back to store bought eggs.

We are going to add these beauties into our mixer one at a time…

And here goes number two

Next comes the vanilla…

Now that the wet and dry ingredients are ready take the butter wrapper we set aside earlier and use it to butter a 9″ x 13″ baking pan.

Now that our pan is prepped we can start combining the wet and dry ingredients with the apples.

Start by adding a little the chopped apples into the sugar mixture…

Don’t forget to mix the apples in. Next add a little of the dry ingredients…

You’re going to keep alternating between the apples and dry ingredients until everything is combined.

By now you’re going to want to dive in to the batter because it smell DIVINE. But, you must resist. In the original recipe, this is where you would add chopped nuts. My kids aren’t that keen on nuts unless it is in peanut butter form so I just skip them.

Spread the batter into the buttered pan, taking care to spread it evenly.

Now it needs to go into an oven preheated to 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 45 minutes to an hour. The cake is done when a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

Are you drooling? I know I am. YUM.

Once the cake is cooled you can cut yourself a nice slice. My niece and I decided to dress ours up with ice cream and caramel sauce. It was so good, but, it’s delicious all by itself.

Some recipes I found that were very similar called it German Apple Cake. I think Raw Apple Cake is just something my mother and grandmother called it. It’s texture is very like coffee cake and while it makes a great dessert, my mother actually made it a lot as a sweet breakfast.

I’ll write out the recipe down below for you. Be sure to let me know if you like the recipe in the comments! Do you have a favorite family recipe?

Much love,

Sarah aka The Lazy Housewife

Mama’s Raw Apple Cake

1 stick butter or margarine (softened)

2 Cups sugar

2 eggs, unbeaten

4 Cups chopped Raw Apple

1 cup chopped nuts (optional)

2 Cups flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1 vanilla

Cream butter in stand mixer, add sugar gradually and mix until creamy. Add eggs one at a time, beating well between each one. Add vanilla. In a separate bowl sift together flour, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon.

Alternate adding apples and dry ingredients to the sugar mixture until everything is combined. Optional: add chopped nuts.

Spread batter into a greased 9″ x 13″ pan. Bake at 350 F for 45 minutes to an hour, or when a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

Enjoy!

Halloween, High Winds and Power Outages! 

Last weekend my kids’ school had their annual hallway trick or treating event. It was a blast as always! 

Ready for candy!


I love that the school offers this for the community. It takes the stress out of trick or treating for me because we are surrounded by people we know and the kids get to see their friends. 

Audrey and I are excited!


Monday morning, however, brought strong winds and rain which knocked out our power at 6:00am and caused school to be canceled. Being the optimist that I am (Or because I didn’t have any inclination of the size of the storm) I figured we’d be out of power for a few hours and the kids would have an extra day off. 

Boy was I wrong. 

The damage was worse than I’d seen in a long time. The few pictures I could get don’t even begin to show what was our reality. 

My husband sent me this picture of what used to be a thick cluster of trees near a pump station.

My husband was kind enough to send me pics of damage near his work. Including the gem below. 

This was his response when I asked him for pictures of the damage. He thinks he’s hilarious.


We lost power for four days, which was not fun, but we made it work. With a borrowed generator we had lights, water, and I could brew coffee. ( Bare necessities, people.)

Tuesday was Halloween and with the help of the awesome people at Central Maine Power, our local mall had power and we were able to take the kids to their trick or treating event for even more Halloween fun! 

It’s the first year Ben wasn’t afraid of the decorations!

She’s not excited at all. Nope.

Asking if she can eat her candy yet!

By Wednesday the kids were finding new ways to annoy each other and I caved. I allowed them some tv time on my phone. My son occupied himself streaming Food Network shows. I’m regretting this decision because of the data overages I’ll be seeing on my bill but, I couldn’t take anymore fighting. 

No power requires washing diapers by hand.


While my kids napped I had to wash our diapers by hand. It was a good work out, but, I prefer my washing machine! 

Line drying is soothing though.


Thursday came and my son finally had school which came as a relief to him and me. He got to see his friends and I got a break from the fighting between him and his sister. Thursday also brought the CMP linemen to the area. 

The linemen working near my husband’s work.


Our power was back on Thursday afternoon. We celebrated with a hot meal and holiday movies. 

I’m so happy to have power back and to get back into our routine. I’m sending good vibes to all the other Mainers still without power in hopes they get power back soon. 

You can expect a recipe post early next week! 

Thanks for reading, 

Sarah 

Aka, The Lazy Housewife 

Broken Bowls and Banana Bread

 

That pic tho 😍

 
My niece asked me to teach her how to bake banana bread today. To anyone else it seems like a simple task that holds no real meaning in the grand scheme of things. But, in our family cooking, baking and food preservation are a family affair. So you already know I was happy to oblige her. 

When my mother passed away I inadvertently became the keeper of her recipes. It’s sort of become my job to pass down my mother’s favorite recipes. I have no idea where her recipes came from, all her favorites were painstakingly written on note cards kept in an aging, green recipe card tin.

It’s ugly, but, I couldn’t imagine keeping my recipes in anything else

 

The tin is now rusted and barely holding together but I can’t bring myself to throw it away.  It was one of several items I was able to salvage along with her favorite baking tools. Among these items were her pie dishes, her favorite Pyrex bowl, a vintage Tupperware 8 cup measure, and my grandmother’s wooden cutting board.

Sadly, the Pyrex bowl met a terrible fate. After decades of use it shattered one day as I was putting it away. I’ve never cried so much over a material possession. But, to me anyway, it wasn’t just an old bowl. Wrapped up in that bowl were the memories of a dozen Thanksgivings spent baking alongside my mother. She drilled into me the steps to making the perfect apple pie, that fresh is best, and to pour love into every meal. Every holiday, family party, and harvest season you could find me in the kitchen helping my mother, with that ridiculously sized bowl. I wasn’t always excited or enthusiastic about helping in the kitchen, but, I sure do miss it now. 

But, let’s get on to why you’re really here, you were searching for a recipe weren’t you? Even if you weren’t, here’s one anyway!

The first recipe I ever tackled as a young girl was my mother’s favorite banana bread recipe. It only has a few ingredients, simple instructions and bakes in about an hour.

The first thing you need is your ingredients:

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My niece was my photographer today. Check her out on Instagram @activistagenda 


Here we have flour, sugar, shortening, baking soda, bananas, and eggs. Also, how cute are these mixing bowls???

I did the first step already and mashed the bananas into oblivion. A few chunks are okay but, you do want them to be more creamy than chunky.

The next step is putting together your dry ingredients. (I didn’t get pictures of this step so forgive me!) Your dry ingredients are, 1 cup of flour, 1 teaspoon salt, and 1 teaspoon baking soda. Once those are combined you can set those aside.

Next you need to cream together 1/4 of a cup of shortening and 1 cup of sugar. It will take on a nice fluffy texture. (Oops! Forgot this picture too! I really need to get myself together.) Next, add in the eggs one at a time, beating well in between each addition.

 

The next step is to alternate between adding the dry ingredients and mashed bananas into the egg/sugar/shortening mixture. Make sure to mix well after each addition

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We’re ready to combine!!!

Once combined it will resemble something like this below!

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If you can’t read it, the spoon says. “Live, Laugh and Lick the Spoon.”


Next, pour it into a greased loaf pan and bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Between 45 minutes to an hour.

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Now we wait….

After about an hour it looks like this:

Isn’t it beautiful?


Now just cut off a big slice and enjoy! 

Yum…..


Here’s the recipe to copy down: 

2 eggs

1/4 cup shortening 

1 cup sugar 

1 1/2 cup flour 

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon baking soda

3 bananas, very ripe 

Mash the bananas until creamy. Set aside. Cream together shortening and sugar. Add in the eggs one at a time, beating well after each one. Set aside. In a separate bowl combine dry ingredients together. Now add the bananas and dry ingredients into the sugar/shortening/egg mixture, alternating between the dry ingredients and bananas. 

Now pour the batter into a greased loaf pan and bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit, 45 minutes to an hour or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. 

I hope you enjoy this recipe as much as we do! 

Much love ❤️ 

Sarah AKA The Lazy Housewife 

Pregnancy and Infant/Child Loss Awareness Day.

 

*Trigger Warning: Miscarriage*

 

Disclaimer: This is strictly my experience with miscarriage. I am not providing medical information or advice. If you have medical concerns please contact your doctor.  

Yesterday was October 15th, which is Pregnancy and Infant/child Loss Awareness Day. I’m late to the show as always. Today I’m going to tell you my story.

 

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My youngest child, Audrey.

In March of 2015 my husband and I found out that we were expecting our 3rd child. We had decided we were finished having kids after our second child was born but, people plan, and fate laughs. Despite being and unintended pregnancy we were happy. Being parents was the journey we chose in life so we welcomed this pregnancy with open arms. At our first ultrasound we were dealt a second shock. We weren’t expecting a 3rd child, but a 4th as well. We were having naturally conceived twins.

I can’t begin to convey the joy and shock we felt. We happily announced the news to our family and friends over Facebook.

I was warned by my doctors that with a twin pregnancy that I will experience twice the symptoms. For example I would have twice the nausea. Which I did.

 

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Our pregnancy announcement 2015

The nausea was unreal and there are no words to describe it. But, I took it in stride. I heard my grandmother’s voice telling me that “a sick momma means a healthy baby.”

It was these words that caused me to have concern when my symptoms vanished around 12 weeks gestation. Being the worrier I am, I called my OB’s office convinced something was wrong. The nurse who took my call tried to soothe my fears by saying that I was entering my second trimester, so it’s normal for my symptoms to decrease. She got me in that afternoon just to be safe.

The wait was terrible. I sat in the waiting room watching happy couples go in and out. Their faces filled with the joy that comes with growing a life. After what seemed like an eternity my name was called. My OB had me lay on the exam table while another doctor wheeled in a bedside ultrasound machine.
I stared up at the ceiling while the doctor watched the screen of the ultrasound machine in silence. Finally, he spoke.

“I can only find one baby.”

He then explained that what had happened was a common condition called “Vanishing Twin Syndrome” or VTS. What happens is that one twin literally vanishes. The baby had stopped developing and had absorbed into the placenta. He spent a couple of minutes checking out the remaining baby and assured me that she was healthy with a strong heartbeat.  My OB comforted me after the other doctor left, she told me that it was ok to be sad and to let myself cry. Here’s my confession: I have never actually let myself cry about my loss.

I didn’t want to announce that we had lost the twin. Of course we had to tell people eventually. When the information came out my inbox became flooded with “condolences”.

“It’s for the best, you can’t afford twins anyway.” (yes, that was actually said to me)

“It could be worse, the baby could have died after it was born.”

“You’re lucky that it happened early”

What part of  losing my baby makes me lucky? I have to go the rest of my life knowing this baby will never have a name, I won’t know if he had his father’s eyes, or my smile. My daughter has to grow up with out her twin, which is a bond unlike any other. My older kids will never know their sibling. I have to live every day with a hole in my heart that will never be filled.

The fact that people had the audacity to tell me it was for the best is one of the reasons why I don’t talk about it. People felt like I had enough kids so it’s okay for them to say things like miscarriage is for the best. But, I’m talking about it now, and so should you.

Don’t stay silent to keep others comfortable. You are not alone in your loss, I’m here beside you and so are many others. Lets raise each other up in love.

I love you all,

Blessed Be,

Sarah aka The Lazy Housewife

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Dark days and Struggles….

I refuse to hide the fact I struggle with mental illness. Family and friends treat it like a shame but, still I keep talking about it. I’ve tried multiple medications, lots of therapy, tried diet, exercise, religion, meditation, the list goes on and on.

At this moment, I feel as I’ve gone as low as I can go. My homesteading attempt has stalled, my weight has skyrocketed, the blog is stagnant and my relationships are strained. The dark thoughts have begun. “My kids would be happier without me,” “My husband deserves better,” “I’m ready to leave this world.”

Accompanying the darkness is the physical manifestation. Headaches, lethargy, chest pain, I feel as if I can’t breathe, my whole body hurts…. I feel as if there is a war raging inside. Myself versus my illness. Reason tells me I have every reason to keep going, that my ideas are great, that my husband and family need me….. But, my reason is tired, it struggles to speak over the roar of the darkness.

The only thing I can do is to trust my doctors, medication, and myself. I’m trying to occupy my time with the coming celebration. Imbolc is next week, I plan to pray to Brigid to help my mind and body heal. Along with prayer, I plan to bless my seeds for the coming spring, and prepare a modest dinner to observe the day. Imbolc is a muted holiday, a time for introspection and meditation, it’s a welcome relief to the hustle and bustle of Yule and Christmas. Along with lots of prayer I will be forcing myself to focus on the projects that lay ahead of me for my homestead.

We will be remodeling our coop again to make room for our flock expansion. We plan to add Turkeys and ducks, my son wants Guinea hens too, I’m not sure about that one yet.

My point to this post is that, I want you to keep fighting. Fight through the dark days and the struggles. I’m pushing through, for my family, for myself and for you too. You matter.

National Suicide Prevention Hotline

Call 1-800-273-8255 or Text “GO” to 741741.

 

What’s Happening on the Homestead…

I’ve been MIA since my intro post because I have been ridiculously busy. Between all the things that comes with being a mother, wife, and homesteader the list of things to do is never-ending. The list is never completed either. Just as I feel like I might have a handle on everything, fate strikes and reminds me how much I don’t have my stuff together.

Over Memorial Day weekend while searching ads for used chicken coops for our chicks who were ready to go outside I found a deal I couldn’t pass up. A large shed/coop combo that was free, as long as I took the five hens she had with it. I jumped right on it. So on Memorial Day my devoted husband and brother-in-law loaded up and headed down to Portland to pick up the coop and chickens. It took them all day to load up the structure and birds and drive home. It was worth the wait. The hens made themselves right at home and enjoyed free ranging in the grove of trees that makes up my front yard. These five hens were the friendliest chickens I had ever met. As soon as I stepped out the door they would run up to me for treats or a quick pat. They adjusted so quickly and I started getting eggs right away.

I allowed the birds to free range, which didn’t cause too many problems. They did use my herb boxes as a dust bath but stayed away from the veggies. After two weeks though I learned a hard lesson about unlimited free range. A hawk got one of the hens, and nearly got a second one a few days later. Saddened, I researched run plans and different methods of protecting my remaining hens and the younger ones once they were integrated to the flock. I decided to get a rooster to help keep an eye out for predators and protect the hens. The rooster I got is extremely young. Less than a year I believe and so far is not impressing me. He’s skittish, runs away, and overall seems like a waste of feed. Plus, he started to lead the hens into my garden. After several decimated crops my husband and I went to Home Depot and bought fence posts, fencing and netting to make a pen for the hens.

Even with a run attached to the coop the rooster still finds a way out, then he stands next to the pen and squawks. He won’t go in if I open the door, and won’t allow me to pick him up to put him in. I have to wait until the hens go in to roost then open the shed and coop doors, and wait inside the entryway until he goes in. Needless to say his fate is uncertain at this time. I don’t have the funds to feed a creature that is not serving it’s purpose, I’m already keeping a hen that doesn’t lay. But, I am struggling with the idea of having him butchered.

On a more cheerful note, our chicks are happily inhabiting a new outdoor brooder pen near the main chicken coop, they seem to be enjoying the outdoors. I picked up the pen from a nice lady about an hour away. I got the pen for a good price and it’s exactly what we needed for our flock of chicks.

With the chicks in their new home, and the hens in their new pen, my herb boxes have been restored and crops have been replaced. I should be able to harvest some radishes and tomatoes soon!

That pretty much brings you up to date! Head over to Instagram and follow @lazyhousewife86 for daily updates! Keep an eye out for my next post!

Blessed Be,

Sarah, The Lazy Housewife

Welcome to The Lazy Housewife: Who I am, and what I am about

Who I am, What I am about

 maternity_kathMy name is Sarah, I live on a small plot of land in Central Maine. I am a stay-at-home mom, aspiring homesteader, novice chicken keeper and home cook. I’m also a lazy housewife.

When I say lazy I don’t mean that I sit at home
eating bon bons and watching soaps. I suffer from severe Anxiety and Depression. Some days it feels like all I have to get off the couch. I want to do things, but I can’t. As a teen and young adult others complained that I didn’t do anything. Lazy, no ambition, anti-social. I’ve heard it all.  It used to bother me, now I really don’t care what others think. I crack a joke, own it and go about my day.

To cope, I began to pursue things that gave me joy. I grew up loving “old-fashioned” things. Frontier life fascinated me. The idea of carving out a life from the wilderness appealed to me in a way that I can’t explain. I read everything I could find related to Pioneers, farmers, homesteading, and Native American life. I devoured The Little House on the Prairie books by Laura Ingalls Wilder. Family and friends found it funny that someone as “lazy” as I was, could be so drawn to a lifestyle that required so much work. It’s very liberating when you stop worrying about others. I kept reading and began dabbling in my passions.

My husband and I have been hobby gardening for a few years. Mostly tomatoes and herbs. I’m starting to get really good at growing herbs! I love using fresh ingredients in my cooking and my kids love learning about plants, the look on their little faces when the first sprouts show is priceless. I quietly dreamed of expanding our little hobby garden into an actual backyard homestead. It was a hard sell to my husband, he knows how some days are struggles for me and he didn’t think I’d be able to handle the workload. Though, he started to warm up to the idea after we moved to a more secluded area with more land and a larger house. He knew I was very passionate about being able to support ourselves using the land around us. He also knew that I cared about what kind of world our children would inherit. After agreeing to start small, adding one new endeavor at a time he agreed to work towards our own homestead! Our first project after a much larger garden is a backyard flock of laying hens!! I ordered a flock of 15, day old chicks from the local farming supply/feed store and we were another step closer to my dream of a backyard homestead.

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My daughter admiring our chicks

Our chicken brooder was a simple set up, a box in a dog kennel to protect the chicks from our cats, pine shavings for litter, water and feed containers and a heat lamp. Right away I had 3 chicks with ‘pasty butt’. Waste had caked over the vent. Nothing says commitment like scrubbing a chickens butt. Pasty butt can kill your chicks so it’s best to get it taken care of right away. I spent a lot of time researching online
and the general consensus was warm water, and cloths or q-tips. I chose to use q-tips soaked with warm water and gently swabbed the waste off the chicks. I then made sure each chick was fully dried off before being placed back into the general population.

Our next hurdle was pecking. Chickens peck each other, they are pretty brutal about it too. It is a natural thing that can’t really be controlled. However, my chicks decided to gang up on one particular, unlucky girl. I found her bloody and missing a good deal of tail feat

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Pickle the Pullet after being pecked

hers. If left in the brooder with the others I was sure that she would have been pecked to death. My only option was to separate her until she healed up. I made an “isolation suite” out of an empty diaper box. Once she was cleaned up I placed her in the box near the original brooder. My son named her Pickle. Pickle the Pullet, healed in a matter  of days and was back in the brooder with the others. Our cute little flock is a month old now and will soon be ready for their coop. Which we have yet to build.

I’ll be using this blog to show our homesteading progress, the failures alongside the successes. Thanks for coming along for the ride! Check me out on Instagram for daily posts @lazyhousewife86, and leave a question, comment, or encouragement below!