Saturday, July 10, 2010

The Unexpected.

As is typical for most folks. This week unfolded nothing like I had anticipated Monday evening!

My friend, Ashley, gave birth to Hosanna Rose on Wednesday morning, and she went to be with the Lord.
Back when Ashley first knew she was pregnant, I made plans to head out after the birth so I could help out and she could get plenty of rest. Things are a little different now than we'd originally thought they would be, but Ashley still needs to rest so I'm leaving tomorrow. I've never felt so bitter sweet about a trip. I'm thrilled to see Ashley and her family again, but this isn't going to be the joyful reunion and meeting of a new life like we had anticipated.


After a terribly dry spell, with record breaking heat, the Lord blessed us with a lovely rain shower this morning. My garden is fried to a crisp, but hopefully it will begin to recover now it's had a good soaking rain.

I have two batches of cucumbers going with lactofermintation! I can hardly wait to see how they turn out. :) Sarah's were delicious and I hope mine are as well!

My cucumber plants are just about dead now though. The hot weather literally shriveled the cucumbers right on the vines. :( And my Jinny Lind melons did not produce at all. But I do have 3 watermelons coming along nicely!!!


Well, I'll catch all of y'all later. I'm not sure if I'll be posting while I'm away, but I'll update when I can.

Monday, July 5, 2010

Happy July 4th!

The unanimous Declaration of the thirteen united States of America

When in the Course of human events it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. — That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, — That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security. — Such has been the patient sufferance of these Colonies; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former Systems of Government. The history of the present King of Great Britain is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over these States. To prove this, let Facts be submitted to a candid world.

He has refused his Assent to Laws, the most wholesome and necessary for the public good.

He has forbidden his Governors to pass Laws of immediate and pressing importance, unless suspended in their operation till his Assent should be obtained; and when so suspended, he has utterly neglected to attend to them.

He has refused to pass other Laws for the accommodation of large districts of people, unless those people would relinquish the right of Representation in the Legislature, a right inestimable to them and formidable to tyrants only.

He has called together legislative bodies at places unusual, uncomfortable, and distant from the depository of their Public Records, for the sole purpose of fatiguing them into compliance with his measures.

He has dissolved Representative Houses repeatedly, for opposing with manly firmness his invasions on the rights of the people.

He has refused for a long time, after such dissolutions, to cause others to be elected, whereby the Legislative Powers, incapable of Annihilation, have returned to the People at large for their exercise; the State remaining in the mean time exposed to all the dangers of invasion from without, and convulsions within.

He has endeavoured to prevent the population of these States; for that purpose obstructing the Laws for Naturalization of Foreigners; refusing to pass others to encourage their migrations hither, and raising the conditions of new Appropriations of Lands.

He has obstructed the Administration of Justice by refusing his Assent to Laws for establishing Judiciary Powers.

He has made Judges dependent on his Will alone for the tenure of their offices, and the amount and payment of their salaries.

He has erected a multitude of New Offices, and sent hither swarms of Officers to harass our people and eat out their substance.

He has kept among us, in times of peace, Standing Armies without the Consent of our legislatures.

He has affected to render the Military independent of and superior to the Civil Power.

He has combined with others to subject us to a jurisdiction foreign to our constitution, and unacknowledged by our laws; giving his Assent to their Acts of pretended Legislation:

For quartering large bodies of armed troops among us:

For protecting them, by a mock Trial from punishment for any Murders which they should commit on the Inhabitants of these States:

For cutting off our Trade with all parts of the world:

For imposing Taxes on us without our Consent:

For depriving us in many cases, of the benefit of Trial by Jury:

For transporting us beyond Seas to be tried for pretended offences:

For abolishing the free System of English Laws in a neighbouring Province, establishing therein an Arbitrary government, and enlarging its Boundaries so as to render it at once an example and fit instrument for introducing the same absolute rule into these Colonies

For taking away our Charters, abolishing our most valuable Laws and altering fundamentally the Forms of our Governments:

For suspending our own Legislatures, and declaring themselves invested with power to legislate for us in all cases whatsoever.

He has abdicated Government here, by declaring us out of his Protection and waging War against us.

He has plundered our seas, ravaged our coasts, burnt our towns, and destroyed the lives of our people.

He is at this time transporting large Armies of foreign Mercenaries to compleat the works of death, desolation, and tyranny, already begun with circumstances of Cruelty & Perfidy scarcely paralleled in the most barbarous ages, and totally unworthy the Head of a civilized nation.

He has constrained our fellow Citizens taken Captive on the high Seas to bear Arms against their Country, to become the executioners of their friends and Brethren, or to fall themselves by their Hands.

He has excited domestic insurrections amongst us, and has endeavoured to bring on the inhabitants of our frontiers, the merciless Indian Savages whose known rule of warfare, is an undistinguished destruction of all ages, sexes and conditions.

In every stage of these Oppressions We have Petitioned for Redress in the most humble terms: Our repeated Petitions have been answered only by repeated injury. A Prince, whose character is thus marked by every act which may define a Tyrant, is unfit to be the ruler of a free people.

Nor have We been wanting in attentions to our British brethren. We have warned them from time to time of attempts by their legislature to extend an unwarrantable jurisdiction over us. We have reminded them of the circumstances of our emigration and settlement here. We have appealed to their native justice and magnanimity, and we have conjured them by the ties of our common kindred to disavow these usurpations, which would inevitably interrupt our connections and correspondence. They too have been deaf to the voice of justice and of consanguinity. We must, therefore, acquiesce in the necessity, which denounces our Separation, and hold them, as we hold the rest of mankind, Enemies in War, in Peace Friends.

We, therefore, the Representatives of the united States of America, in General Congress, Assembled, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions, do, in the Name, and by Authority of the good People of these Colonies, solemnly publish and declare, That these united Colonies are, and of Right ought to be Free and Independent States, that they are Absolved from all Allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain, is and ought to be totally dissolved; and that as Free and Independent States, they have full Power to levy War, conclude Peace, contract Alliances, establish Commerce, and to do all other Acts and Things which Independent States may of right do. — And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of Divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes, and our sacred Honor.

Friday, July 2, 2010


Ever since I can remember, my parents have owned a Cuisinart food processor. Apparently, they bought it years ago, before my time, which makes it at least 21+ years old.

We used it all the time. A few months ago, I was grating asiago cheese and the tab holding the lid on broke. Since then, we've realized just how much we really did use it! Unfortunately it was so old, in order to fix it, we would have to purchase an entire bowl set up, as they've changed the design a bit. (No surprise there!) That meant, we could either spend $100+ on the replacement parts, or $160 on an entirely new food processor.

Well, Mom sent me to Bed Bath and Beyond today to purchase a new one.

I choose the Classic Series 14-Cup model as we still have 15 blades Dad purchased extra for the old one and they're all still perfectly good! Plus, I like traditional shapes and this is nearly identical to our old one. :)

I can't wait to use it for slicing cucumbers for pickling! Or grating more pramesan cheese for stuffed zucchini!

We're keeping the old base, as it still runs perfectly so it will always work for back up.

Sunday, June 27, 2010

So I had planned to make Oyster Stew and a special chocolate cake today, but we forgot to buy oysters yesterday, and I woke up to late to make the cake!

Today I did harvest the first of my cucumbers from the garden. I was picking Swiss Chard for supper, when I looked over and realized there was a giant cuke right under my nose! It was about 10" long and 2.5" in diameter. I sliced it up and served it with white vinegar, dill, salt and pepper.

Tomorrow, I need to get out to the garden early and harvest the green beans. They really should have been harvested on Saturday, but I was enjoying my family at the Celitc Fling, so they are a little over ripe. But no matter, I'll pickle them for Dilly Beans.


My dear friend, Ashley, in Kansas is going through a very dark time right now. She is carrying their fourth child (She's 33.5 wk along) and they've just learned on Friday that the little girl has anencephaly (no brain) and will likely not even live through labor and delivery. If y'all could uphold her and her husband and children in your prayers, that they might find comfort in the Lord during this difficult time.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

I was never a big fan of mayonnaise. It always seemed a bit to greasy and plastic tasting for me to really enjoy it.

However, I've been experimenting with the recipe Sally Fallon gives in "Nourishing Traditions" and I really have fallen in love with homemade mayonnaise! I was mixing up another batch tonight and I took a few pictures for y'all.

You'll start with eggs. I used 2 whole eggs and 2 egg yolks. Dump them in a blender.

Now add 2 teaspoons of natural mustard.

The juice of 1 lemon.

Now comes the distinctive feature of the Sally Fallon recipe. She has you add whey to it. This will make your mayonnaise last up to 6 weeks in the fridge whereas without whey it would only last a few days. It also gets some lovely fermintation going which your digestive system will thank you for!

If you don't have whey, never dis-pare, it's easy to make yourself. Get some plain, natural, live culture yogurt (Seven Stars is a great brand). Line a strainer with one layer of fine cotton. I use muslin from JoAnns. Place the strainer over a bowl and pour your yogurt into it. Give it a few hours and you'll have thick, creamy yogurt in the strainer and nice yellow whey in the bowl!

I added 2 'fat' Tablespoons.

You can never go wrong with garlic, so throw in a clove. But, don't add 2 or it will be over powering. ;)

A 1/4 teaspoon of Paprika. (Did I mention that I really played around with Sally's recipe?!)

1/2 teaspoon Sea Salt.

I also added 2 teaspoons of onion powder, but I did not get a picture of that!
Now, blend this all for about 30 seconds, until everything is nicely combined and the garlic is thoroughly ground up.

Measure out your oil. Sally calls for extra virgin Olive Oil. I found that wayyy to over powering, so I use extra light Olive Oil. You'll want around 1 & 2/3 cups of oil.

Now, before you start adding it to the eggs, turn the blender back on. Pour the oil into the blending eggs slowly, letting it thoroughly incorporate. It will get very thick and by the last few teaspoons it won't seem to be mixing at all.

Once all the oil is added put in into a glass jar, cover and let sit out at room temperature for about 7 hours. I leave mine out over night unless it's really warm outside. This allows the whey to begin it's preservative actions. Once it's finished sitting out, pop it into the fridge and store it there.

Voila! Perfect, flavorful and nutritious mayonnaise!

Saturday, June 19, 2010


I'm part of a small college/career age Bible study and we're going through Jim Bergs book "Changed Into His Image" and we are in the chapter titled "Identifying Your Own Way."

A particular paragraph really stood out to me in regards to the patriocentric bent that many conservative homeschoolers are going.

"The only way you have sought God is to ask Him to help you get your family under control. He will not help you do that; He wants to break you of your controlling ways. You cannot call Craig to a position of submission to you from your position of rebellion against God."..."Several weeks passed, however, before Frank was broken enough by his son's continued rebellion to admit to God and others that what had appeared "so right" to him was actually his own way of controlling life to make it work for him."


Friday, June 18, 2010

Mom's babysitting my SIL's three kids while she's doing hair for a wedding.

So, I got the youngest, Mica, who's only a couple months old. She's such a beautiful little miss, and I'm not partial at all. :) I've just walked her to sleep and I couldn't resist taking a couple pictures.