Monday, September 19, 2011

The apple day...

The apple day came, and it went. I am so glad we all survived. What an undertaking 18 bushels of apples can be! We had a family over to split the apples and work load and I am so thankful for all the extra hands. Two moms and various combinations of children were working all day long. The dads were smoking eight slabs of bacon and the hocks from four pigs, as well as cooking down the scrap bones to make a very tasty stock to can for later use. the end of the day, we had 112 quarts of applesauce, 12 gallons of cider, and about four bushels of apples for eating and possibly for making apple pie filling (if I can find the energy!).

I will post the meat smoking pictures when we are all the way done with the processing...we still have some hams to smoke! Yummm!

Thursday, September 15, 2011

My new soap recipe!

There is such a feeling of satisfaction that comes from a successful batch of soap...Here is a new recipe I created. It is a mixture of mango butter, home-rendered lard, and 76 degree coconut oil. The fragrance is an citrus blend, hence the orange color I chose. I highly recommend the book by Anne L. Watson, called Smart Soapmaking. She explains how to create your own soap recipes which opens the door to your imagination and creativity. I am currently awaiting the arrival of her new book on milk soaps and am hoping it will help to take care of our surplus milk supply! Happy soap making and God bless!

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

It's time for apples!

This Saturday we will be smoking our hams, bacon, and hocks for those of you who ordered a pig or part of one from the last butchering. As if we didn't already have enough to do, we decided to make a "day" of it and do our years worth of apples as well. We will be making applesauce, sweet apples for pie, and apple cider with a cider press borrowed from a friend. Come on out and visit our farm (and help if you want to get your hands dirty!) as we make a day it! Bring a lunch and some chairs and rediscover some forgotten skills. For those who can not make it, we will post pictures and file this project away for future reference. Have a blessed day!

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Will fall never come?

As I TRY to wait patiently for the next season to arrive, I am wringing my hands over these precious baby plants my daughter started for the family fall garden. I think the shift has started as the daytime temps drop to the low 90's and nightime temps tease us with delightful 60's and 70's. I am reminded that God is sovereign as I wait (wringing my hands) and bathe my baby plants with prayer. Only our heavenly Father knows the real 10 - day forecast (though there are those that say they know), and once again we come face to face with how all of creation is in His hands. We farmers and gardeners have an unfair sneak peak of just how truly dependent we are on Him. We choose to live a life of greater deliberate dependence on Him as we try to till the garden and tend the sheep, dependent on it all for our food. Others who choose the other life are at such a disadvantage as they drive to Wal-mart for their daily bread, and they miss, I feel, a direct connection with our Father. There is no brick building with a greeter and air-conditioning in my garden (although I have often daydreamed of such this past summer). No barrier between my hands (and those of my children and husband) and the delicious food that ends up on the table. I am very aware of the Fall, the curses, the sweat, the WEEDS, and sometime tears as I partner with my Father to live the life I believe He has called my family (and recently I have dared to say "us", meaning the Church as a whole) to live. Might we, the beautiful bride of Christ, if we dare to live the way Israel was told by our Father to live (as agrarian seperatists), experience a much deeper, richer spiritual life? And be in a better position to witness to the walking dead we live among and provide for the Church's needs as we are commanded to do according to His Word IF we are independent from the world and it's systems of provision and instead dependent on our precious Lord and His systems of provision? It is all laid out in His holy to provide food, who to provide it for, how to live with each other, who we should live with (and who not to), how to spend our money, how to govern ourselves and others, the list goes on and on. It's all there. We already know that the world's way does not work, and is not getting better the longer we wait to see if it will. Christ's church will have a literal victory on this earth. It is not all getting worse and worse until we all are vaporized to heaven. God is preparing His church not to just survive to suffer with the pagans. God is preparing His church to endure so that when the world and it's system fail, we will be able to do what He has called us to do. Glorify Him, feed the hungry, clothe the naked. We will be that light on the hill, a real hill, on this earth. What a mighty God we serve!

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Thankfully in Prayer

Lord, Thank you for all the blessings you have provided for me and my family! Thank you for the Godly people and families you have laid in our path. I would like to pray for them and their peace and diligence in their walk. I pray for our country, I pray for the people around the country to wake up and study your word, I pray for us all to figure out what we can do as Christians. The Lord has given us six days each week to work hard at building His Kingdom! If we are not building His Kingdom then we are tearing it down. Then on the seventh day we are blessed to have the required rest that we need to refresh our spirits in the Lord! Please Lord, give us(me) the desire to Love you more everyday.