Showing posts from July, 2009

Busy Week

When I attended the Mennonite church, there was a common saying when speaking about plans being made, whatever the plan, it was followed with the phrase, " Lord willing" and what a wonderful little phrase that is, leaving room in our lives, in our plans for the higher plans He might have for us. I used to say that too, and in my busy-ness, it seems I have forgotten to always acknowledge that things can change according to the will of God. To be honest, in the past little while I often forget to put things in the right order and at times just think about what I want to do or feel I need to do without praying first about Gods plans for my day.
This week, I had so much I wanted to do, especially get the apron done for the give away and finish hemming my curtains for the living room, but instead of getting to do what I wanted to do, there were numerous tasks and such that had to be done since Wednesday night Emery took me car shopping. His car is not reliable any longer and we fo…

Check this out !

Check out this give away for a quilt....
Marie-Madeline Studio

I am still working on the project for my give away....just not quite finished

More Than Money - What Is "The Good Life" Parable

Found this over at a friends blog
and its just too good not to pass along.

Tuesday Morning Ramble

It rained last night which is a huge blessing for our parched land. Emery and I stood hand in hand on the south porch watching the lightening flash across the sky and listened to the thunder boom. The timing of this rain was perfect, as Emery tilled the garden this past weekend and we hoped for a few rains before he tilled it again and the forecast calls for a chance of rain every day for the rest of the week. It was a bad year for the garden. We lost the battle with the weeds when I was sick and that along with the dry weather and scorching sun, nothing made it. We might have starved if it had been 200 years ago. But, we do have eggs and milk. The neighbor, who tends to his garden daily has not done much better than we have. His plants more dry and brown than green and bearing.
As I walked through the back door, heading towards the barn, Harry at my side, the cats coming towards me in train like fashion, one after another, single file, hoping to be fed some warm milk and some food, I…

Remember Your ABC's

Every time I get on the treadmill I see a poster on the wall in front of me that has these ABC reminders. They are meant to remind me of my goals in life and also to inspire me to keep going on the treadmill ! Its a good advise, good wisdom and has thus far served me well in life. Always good to remember your ABC's : )
I did my running today, with 3 lb weights in each hand, a couple times I wanted to quit, but read the poster and kept going. Reminders can be powerful tools in reaching our goals.

Remember Your ABCs
Avoid negative sources, people, places, things and habits
Believe in yourself
Consider things from every angle
Don't give up and don't give in
Enjoy life today, yesterday is gone and tomorrow may never come
Family and friends are hidden treasures, seek them and enjoy their riches
Give more than you planned to
Hang on to your dreams
Ignore those who try to discourage you
Just do it
Keep trying no matter how hard it seems, it will get easier
Love yourself first and mo…


We live in a face paced world, where just about anyone's ideas can become global thought in just a matter of seconds. Everyone has an opinion, an idea, a belief and with the world wide web, we can all view hundreds of ideas on any one subject in a short period of time....the result can lead to confusion. A simple example is eating. Used to be a long time ago there was no confusion to what we ate, we ate what we had on hand, what we grew, what we could afford. There were not millions of supplements we felt we needed or a zillion diet plans, some that offer prolonged life, thinner bodies, more muscular bodies etc etc. There are folks out there that are so full of confusion on what to eat that they feel obligated to change the contents of their cupboards and pantries once a month or more just to keep up with what they just read. There is nothing simple about that approach to life and certainly nothing calming. It can be the very same thing for our religious expression. We think we ar…

Date Walnut Carob Truffles

We are blessed to have a wonderful health food bulk store about one mile from our home. Bin after bin of grains, nuts, and dried fruits and vegetarian/health food needs.
Today after a visit to the store I came home and made these tasty little treats. Date Walnut Carob Truffles
Ingredients Serves 8 16 fresh dates, stoned 1 1/2 cups ground walnuts 4 tsp carob powder freshly squeezed juice of 1 lime Place the dates, walnuts, carob powder, lime juice in a food processor and blend until the mixture forms a stiff ball - adding more lime juice if necessary to help bring the mixture together. Remove blade and roll date mixture into balls. Roll each ball in fine unsweetened coconut. If you have slightly wet hands when rolling the balls, it works easier and the coconut sticks a bit better.

Walnut Oatmeal Patties

We eat almost no meat, haven't ever. I will eat a small amount of meat at times if we go out to eat, but never pork.
Melissa was talking to me today about how she has no idea on how to cook meat, even chicken and Melanie is the same way. Its just not been part of our diet. My son in laws just have to live meatless lives at home since the girls don't cook meat. Today I made a recipe that was in a cookbook I used in 7th grade, called Chefs and Cookettes , which I think was written primarily for students just learning to cook vegetarian, which means the recipes are easy to make. These patties are easy to make and always tastes great. If you are vegan you can use an egg substitute and soy milk where it calls for milk. I think the original recipe called for cream, but I have never used cream. These patties can be served in burger buns or just as an Entree.
Walnut Oatmeal Patties 3/4 c. walnut or pecans ground 1 small onion diced 1 cup quick oatmeal 2 eggs unbeaten 4 T milk 1/2 teaspoon salt

900,000 Hits

Today, my blog reached a big milestone, 900,000 hits since I have been keeping track, (just about 3 years time). It is a true red letter day for me. Thank you dear readers for your kindness, loyalty and friendship.
To celebrate this big mile stone, I will be announcing a give-away this coming Monday, so stay tuned for the details.
Thank you readers for making this blogging expeience so much fun.
A little note of interest, the 900.000th hit was from Walla Walla Washington ~

Some How To's For New Readers

Here is a link to a post from 2007 that lists previous posts of mine where I share some "how to's" that might be of interest for those folks wanting to live a more simple homestead sort of life, no matter where you live..
How To's For New Readers
it includes links regarding: dipping bees wax candles, living on one income my favorite Amish Bread recipe Soap making and raising Homestead children and here is a link to a post I wrote about the joy of Cast Iron Cookware in 2007

Barn Chores in The Dark

We stayed out a bit later than usual tonight running some errands, which meant we did farm chores by flashlight. We use one of those hand crank flashlights and love it, too hot to be carrying the lantern around with us in summer.Emery held the light while I fed and milked the goat. He said he would do the chicken house chores. Smart man flashed the light in the nesting boxes before reaching in and it was a wise choice tonight as there was a 5 ft long rat snake curled up in one of the boxes. Emery coaxed it out of the nesting box and then gathered the eggs ! Farm life is not for the scaredy cat kind of person. We have a friend that is just the epitome of femininity, and has chickens. Her husband is gone so its just her and her critters on her little farm. She carries a handgun at all times since she has found a few rattlesnakes in her barns. Rattlers are not the kind of snake you try and coax them into a new location ! I had to snap a photo of the snake

Wandering The Land

This morning was a lazy one, I did my chores and then roamed around with my camera around my neck, thinking about a book I am reading on Compassion by Ram Dass. Its profound, and one that requires you to read a paragraph and then chew on it a while.
On my little walk I discovered another batch of hungry kittens, 6 to be exact. I am guessing the momma cats around this neck of the woods know there are always bowls on milk in the morning and there seems to be an endless supply of cat food, so it makes sense for them to come here and have their kittens. At present we have 11 cats if you count my two cats and the two litters of kittens. I have no idea what to do with them all. Love to have them all fixed and given to good homes. They are so cute. Not so sure we could afford to have 9 kittens fixed, but maybe we can figure something out for them. Maybe they just need to be taken to the animal shelter. It is a sunless day which is fine, its not quite so hot. Melanie, Mei-Ling and their fr…

Loreena McKennitt- Kecharitomene

My afternoon music choice to go along with sitting on the porch , watching it rain and read... and sipping coconut chai tea. A most perfect afternoon experience

A Slow Day in A Fast Paced World

Gray clouds scattered across the sky in amazing patterns, sunlight poking through here and there. I feel so grateful to have the time to just stand and watch the sky change moment by moment. The recent rains have refreshed the grass and its a bit less "crunchy" under my feet. Tiny thin blades of new grass are appearing in the pasture, but will they make it through the triple digit temperatures that are in the upcoming forecast ? I love the beauty of nature, and the sheer miracle of how things regenerate and how effortless the grass grows and how sure it is that leaves will fall of the trees in autumn and return in spring. The older I get the more amazed I am daily at how beyond our intelligence Gods creation is. He has thought of everything it seems. A perfect creator. I love the walk from the house to the milk barn. Goats are always standing at the gate waiting for me, and they bawl a bit when I divert my attention to the chicken house to let the hens out for the morning. …

Day by Day

a song I love

Just need to paint

The porches are done....Joel finished them today by putting on the skirting and the fascia board. Now, begins the job of painting the porches. How lovely they both look and how much we have enjoyed them already. It was so nice having a fine Christian man do the work for us. All our additions have been built by members of the Mennonite church we used to attend. And as I write Emery is getting an estimate for the costs of enlarging our bedroom, a job we have wanted to do for several years. Taking the wall down between the computer room and our bedroom and turning it into one large room and having a closet put in. We are moving closer to the place of having our house the way we envisioned it way back when we purchased it nearly two decades ago. Paying as we go for each improvement. When we sit down in the evenings and think about how God lead us to this house and how much joy has been experienced in our little home, it warms our hearts. It is home and it has never owned us, it has been o…

Our Humanity should be reason for Mercy

We as a people, and yes, I am including all people in this, myself standing in first place, no matter what faith is held to to or ascribed to, all, fall short in some way. We are all guilty of being not as compassionate and loving at all times as we should be. It is as though we all have been hardwired to know that being compassionate is best. But, we all judge someone unfairly at some time in our lives. We all, with no exception, have deeds in our personal history that we wish we handled some other way. But, knowing this, knowing we all fall short, can serve as a gift, a lesson, an opportunity to strive for a better attitude, to have a deeper understanding of compassion and yes, mercy towards others. Mercy, is such a beautiful thing, it is our gift to another and the only motivation to show mercy is compassion that stems from a deep love of all our fellow humans. Mercy sees nothing beyond our mutual humanity. No color, no creed, no preconceived notions of what must be manifested…

An Experiment

Twice in the last 15 years I have tried a social experiment of sorts. Wondering if I can get an idea of what the true and honest climate is within Christianity in my area.
The first experiment took place just about 15 years ago when I was in the thick of the homeschooling community. Very fundamental folks in this group and at this time, many were starting to have problems with their teenagers. Most of the parents tried hard to keep their problems well hidden and they tried to maintain this "keeping up appearances" mode. I decided to see just what my closest of friends in that community would do if I just changed one thing in my home, sounds silly doesn't it ? How could one "thing" make a difference when I remained the very same. I put up a table in the living room with candles on it and a bird feather. Nothing else. No other changes made in the home and certainly none in my words, deeds or beliefs. One by one these very fundamental Christian women came to the h…

Cheese Making Day

There was lots of goats milk in the fridge this morning so decided it was the day to make up a batch of Ricotta cheese. Its a simple cheese to make and takes very little time from start to finish.
Fias Co Farm has a good recipe with good instructions and its almost exactly how I make it. Just click their name and it should take you right to the recipe page for making Ricotta, and you can make it from store bought milk. Give it a try sometime, its fun to make and tastes so good. Thinking tomorrow will be lasagna making day, with all this cheese on hand. After the cheese has hung up for an hour, I will break it up a bit, lightly salt it and then refrigerate it until later when I make the lasagna. heating the milk to 200 degrees F adding in the white vinegar the cheese is starting to separate from the whey a colander lined with fine cheesecloth transferring the curds to the colander the whey ricotta will hang up over the sink for one hour

Barn Cleaning

It's not the most fun job to do on a hot summer morning, but it was enjoyable working along side Emery as we cleaned the barn, milk house and hay barn. It took us almost 4 hours to get it all done, and since we started early in the morning, we were finished and in the house by lunch time. Hard work is good for you and we had lots of time to chat while we worked. At first I let the goats be walking around as we worked, but then after two full wheel barrow loads of nasty old hay got tipped over by Licorice, they were hooked to the fence for a bit ! No one wants to mess with nasty hay twice needlessly. Emery and I took turns inside the barn, scrapping up the nasty stuff, but my good husband hauled every load to the compost pile.Emery and I took some breaks under the China berry Tree, sipping cool water and letting the gentle breeze cool us. When the job was done and everything was clean and fresh, we felt a deep sense of satisfaction and a bit of pleasure knowing it would b…

It Was Party Time

Saturday evening the family all came over to celebrate Emery's birthday. As much fun as we had, we still all missed having Melissa and James here with us.
We had a beach vacation sort of theme for his party. Emery loves the ocean and as hard a worker as he is, he just never seems to take a vacation so I created a little tropical paradise for him in the dining room and on the porch. He was even willing to wear a silly straw hat and a Hawaiian style shirt. We had "haystacks" to eat and I made a coconut cake with a layer of crushed pineapple and coconut in the middle. The little girls played and danced to the music I had put together for this land locked beach party. We had lots of fun and after the children and grand-blessings had gone home, Emery and I sat out on the porch for a couple hours, counting our blessings and thanking God for all that we have in our lives that is simply good.

Mothering Magazine: The History

Thought I would share this with my readers. Mothering Magazine has been a favorite of mine for about 30 years. Now I read it as a grand-Mother

Evening On The Porch

Most of the construction is done on the two porches. Between the two of them, we have about 300 sq feet of more space to enjoy for family gatherings and simply to enjoy on long summer evenings. Since they are both covered porches, we can even enjoy them in the rain. There is a bit more finishing touches to be done and then paint them. I will be doing the painting in the fall when its not so hot out.
Emery and I sat outside on the south porch until time to do chores and then after chores we tried out the back porch. Both are delightful. Tomorrow night we will celebrate Emery's birthday and everyone is looking forward to spending time on the porches. We are such outdoor folks. One of the first things I intend to do is put up a nice retractable clothes line on the long south porch for those rainy weeks when its hard to get the clothes dried. Life is good.
We have been so blessed by having an honest, god fearing, hard working, very skilled workman and crew building the porch for us. A fi…