Baby goats in denim

Our goats are kidding – seriously that is what they call it when goats have babies – and since there have been some cold nights our farm manager made them blankets – our grandkids love the idea – are they cute or what? Adorable and we hold and handle them a lot so that they are very domesticated and used to people and children – then we donate them to children’s summer camps and so the cycle continues. Here I am holding one of the babies in her denim outfit. Soft and sweet. And in a few weeks we will be visiting a breeder who has sheep – to meet some of the ewes who are giving birth – and once weaned we will bring back two female baby lambs to rear at The Little Farm – and eventually we will bring in a ram and our pregnant sheep will have babies – and we will have sheeps milk! I am looking forward to making sheep’s milk cheese – for the first time at The Little Farm – one gallon of goats milk makes one pound of cheese but only half a gallon of sheep’s milk is needed to make the same amount. So this summer we will be able to offer both sheep’s and goat’s cheese. We are excited!

Larraine holding baby goat in denim Feb 2016

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Women in leadership add Profits to Companies

A very interesting article

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Tough Workouts….

My husband and dog both worked out with our trainer Mike – and were both pretty pooped after it.

Guess what happened? They both fell asleep on the floor of the gym. So cute.

The white mark on Goldie’s leg is where she had to have stitches after deciding to jump the fence – to join us walking down the hill outside our house. It is healing nicely after our amazing Vet Peter Erling sewed it up with Clive as Assistant Surgeon,  but we made the fence higher to prevent it happening again. Rescue dogs are quite insecure and the sight of both of us walking away from her made her risk everything to join us. An amazingly loyal and loving dog. We adore her and she gave us quite a scare.

Goldie and Clive in Gym FEb 2016 Goldie and Clive sleeping after workout in gym Feb 2016

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Birthday cake – a rainbow one – ended up making 12 individual layers – whew what a job! But lots of joy

Our grandson Jonah is very particular in his tastes and he requested a 7th birthday cake in the colors of the rainbow with blue frosting and M&Ms – so I made one – and then realised that it was not going to be enough for 25 kids and 15 adults so I made another one!

Here is the cake process!

The cake mix in the beginning!

Cake mix Jonah 2016

Putting the vanilla batter into separate dishes

Plates for individual cake batter 2016 JOnah bdayJonah Rainbow cakes unfrosted 6 layers raw mix base color vanilla-2016 7th bdat

Putting the coloring into the separate dishes and then into the cake pansJonah Rainbow cakes unfrosted 6 layers raw mix different colors-2016 7th bdat

The layers – two separate bakings

Jonah Rainbow cakes unfrosted 6 layers unassembled -2016 7th bdat

Cooked layers ( three of 12)

Jonah Rainbow cakes unfrosted 6 layers in cake pans 2016 7th bdat Before frosting – layers of vanilla frosting with sprinkles on them ( The second cake had alternate chocolate and vanilla frosting with sprinkles)

Jonah Rainbow cakes unfrosted 6 layers made 12 -2016 7th bdat

Before the cakes were cut…..Jonah Rainbow cakes complete 2 -2016 7th bdat Jonah Rainbow cakes comple -2016 7th bdat

The final cake cut in the end!

JOnahs Bday cake at bday Jan 2016 Rainbow

And four very happy grandsons with the happiest one of all – me – with a grandson sandwich! Jonah is the one in the grey shirt.

A grandson sandwich Jack Jonah Noah Gabe Grandma before Jonahs bday Jan 2016

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Persimmons are so tasty any style! They are weighing down our trees right now – and we love them! And a super family photo

PersimmonsPersimmons are great in fruit salad, eaten on their own, in persimmon pudding or persimmon bread. Here is a great recipe – enjoy

Persimmon Pudding


  • Ripe persimmons enough  to make two cups of pulp
  • 3 cups of milk
  • 1.5 cups of sugar I used brown
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 cups of all purpose flour
  • 1 tsp of baking soda
  • 1 tsp of baking powder
  • I tsp of vanilla extract
  • Dash of cinnamon
  • ½ cup chopped nuts optional ( I didn’t use)
  • Whipped Cream ( I didn’t use)


  1. Heat the oven to 350 and remove the skin and seeds from persimmons and puree the pulp in a blender or food processor.
  2. In a large bowl combine the pulp milk sugar eggs flour baking soda baking powder vanilla extract and cinnamon until well mixed.
  3. Stir in the chopped nuts if desired.
  4. Pour the mixture into an ungreased 9-13 pan and bake for 70 minutes until knife inserted into the center comes out clean.
  5. Serve warm with whipped cream. Serves 8.

Below is a glorious picture of our son and daughter in law and their four adorable little boys – how blessed we are!


James Donne Jack Jonah Noah Gabe Jan 2016

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Who said Dogs do not smile? Our new rescue does!

Dogs smile. No doubt in my mind. Just take a look at our grandsons with Goldie our new rescue. Is she a happy dog or what?
Noah Gabe and Goldie Jan 17 2016

We are still enjoying the cold weather – and hoping for more rain!! WHOHOO! California needs every drop!

Soup is the best meal. Here is a recipe from a friend – more like a chili, or stew or really thick soup – Thank you Jackie and Stephen – they are both amazing chefs! YUM! (They made it for 80 people – seriously – so here are the amounts for all size groups.)



8 32 64 80


  • 1 LB 4 LB 8 LB 10LB Sweet Italian Sausage – (I use chicken or turkey sausage)
  • 1 Large 4 Lg 8 Lg 10Lg Chopped Onion
  • 2 Cans 8 Cans 16 Cans 20 Cans Chopped Italian Tomatoes (35oz) (Chop finer)
  • 4 Cans 12 Cans 24 Cans 30 Cans Broth (13 ¾ ea)
  • 2 Tsp 8 Tsp 16 Tsp 20 Tsp Basil leaf crumbled
  • 1 Cup 4 Cups 8 Cups 10 Cups Farro ( can us Orzo if desired)
  • ½ Tsp 2 Tsp 4 Tsp 5 Tsp Salt
  • ¼ Tsp 1 Tsp 2 Tsp 3 Tsp Pepper


  1. Cook the sausage in a large saucepan, breaking up until pink color disappears.
  2. Saute onions in pan until soft.
  3. Add tomatoes, broth and basil, bring to boil.
  4. Stir in farro, salt & pepper.
  5. Lower the heat and simmer for 20 minutes or until Orzo is tender.
  6. Add more aalt & pepper to taste.
  7. Can serve with grated Parmesan cheese.

Truly delicious! Enjoy

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Home Depot is the place where we should spend our money – and this is why

An amazing video of the founder of Home Depot.  I will be spending all of our farm purchase money there from now on. Truly meaningful And who knew?

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Update – the EY Strategic Growth Forum Link in an earlier post – corrected – amazing panel on Gender Parity! Berkshire Hathaway and more

EY is in the forefront of Gender Parity – congratulations! I had posted an incorrect link to their panel at their annual Strategic Growth Forum in Palm Springs last year where I and our son James were honored to participate.

Here is the corrected link – thanks to Lisa Schiffman of EY for spotting it!

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Persimmon Bread – we have a huge crop this year so we make and freeze this to enjoy all year long


This is adapted from a James Beard Recipe. Higher amounts of sugar make the bread more moist. I left out the walnuts and the liquor since we prefer our bread without both.

Persimmon Bread Little Farm Style


3½ cups sifted flour
1½ teaspoons salt
2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
2 to 2½ cups sugar
1 cup melted unsalted butter and cooled to room temperature
4 large eggs, at room temperature, lightly beaten
3 cups persimmon puree (from about 5 squishy-soft Hachiya persimmons)
2 cups raisins, or diced dried fruits (such as apricots, cranberries, or dates)


  1. Butter 2 loaf pans. Line the bottoms with a piece of parchment paper or dust with flour and tap out any excess.
  2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  3. Sift the first 5 dry ingredients in a large mixing bowl.
  4. Make a well in the center then stir in the butter, eggs, persimmon puree then the raisins.
  5. Bake 1 hour or until toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
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Egg Drop Soup – sooo easy and yummy – light too

I love noodles – of all kind. And chicken soup is soothing – still cannot find proof that it helps ( empirical proof that is) – just the goodness of the way I feel when I eat it! And that is enough for me! Here is a picture of one of our farm grown eggs – with a little quail egg which is the speckled one there too. About 6 of them with salad is my preferred low calorie lunch. Yum!Eggs and quail eggs broken

Egg Drop Chicken Soup


  • 1 (16 ounce) can chicken broth
  • 1/2 teaspoon soy sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon sesame oil, or to taste
  • 1/4 cup finely broken udon noodles
  • 2 teaspoons water
  • 1 teaspoon cornstarch (optional)
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • sea salt to taste
  • freshly ground black pepper to taste


  1. Combine chicken broth, soy sauce, and sesame oil together in a small saucepan; bring to a boil. Stir udon pieces into broth and cook, stirring occasionally, until cooked through but are still firm to the bite, 10 to 12 minutes.
  2. Whisk water and cornstarch together in a bowl. Whisk cornstarch mixture into broth mixture until smooth and thickened slightly. Gradually pour in eggs, stirring gently and constantly, until eggs are wispy and cooked through, 2 to 3 minutes. Season with sea salt and black pepper.
  3. Be careful to keep stirring the soup while you add the egg or it will clump up. Stir briskly if you’re worried about this. Over-stirring is not as much of a problem as under stirring.


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