Monday, October 6, 2014

Still Here - Just Busy


I'm still here, we have just been very busy.  We've been canning, dehydrating and freezing.
My daughters in love too have been canning and making beautiful items for their families this winter.
We have all been trying to 'put by' before the snow begins to fly and the gardens are done for the year.

DH and I made a very quick trip to Michigan to see family.  We took a week and our motto was divide and conquer.  DH spent time helping his mother and I spent my days with my mom trying to do some little things while we were there.



We did silly things really.  I cut mom's hair, took her shopping, drove her to see my sister and husband, shared a cup of coffee and conversation.  We did all get out together for steak dinner and I even got an afternoon with my  youngest sister for lunch and some fun shopping.  So really we accomplished quite a bit since we only had 4 days.

We are back to our 'pay money' jobs now as well as home to continue to tuck items away while the beautiful fall lasts.  One more load of wood is on the list just to make sure there is plenty for winter.  I have tomatoes on the vine and when we have a frost I will have grapes to juice as well.  So we are here and plugging along... just hasn't been a lot of time for blogging.
Hope you are having a beautiful fall and putting by for winter.
a little bird


Friday, September 5, 2014

Food Storage - Wendy DeWitt



I think this is a great video on food storage.  My mom wanted to see this video so I am sharing it with all so she has easy access.  Hope you enjoy it.

Wendy has written two books Everything Under the Sun and Everything Made Simple.  They are food storage plans for a year.  A 'how to' in a simple manner.  So if you would like to do food storage this is a simple way to get started.
I am not LDS but they have some great information regarding food storage and they are generous to share this information with all.  I thank Wendy DeWitt for sharing her knowledge and books free of charge.

My mom also had some questions about a gamma seal lid.  I use these on my flour and rice because they are easy access.

 

  a little bird




Saturday, August 23, 2014

It was a dark and stormy night...


We have had two hail storms in the past two days.  The picture above is from yesterday's storm. 

Below is the school yard today, still covered with hail from yesterday's storm.  Sadly the gardens are shredded.  What made it through Thursdays storm was trashed in Friday's...



Monday, August 18, 2014

Above and Beyond: The Birth of the Israeli Air Force

What a blessing.
This brought tears to my eyes. These men were heroes.



Sample Reel for 'Above and Beyond: The Birth of the Israeli Air Force' - Playmount Productions from Katahdin Productions on Vimeo.

Genesis 12:3New Living Translation (NLT)

I will bless those who bless you and curse those who treat you with contempt. All the families on earth will be blessed through you.”

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Food Saver




One of my dear friends called tonight and asked me about  my food saver.   I'm posting pictures for her of mine as well as some demos from youtube on using the Food Saver.

We use this for of course freezing meat, in the bags, which works wonderfully. 




 I also use mine for vacuum sealing jars of my dehydrated foods.  It extends the shelf life by years.  This is only for items that would normally be on the shelf.  You can use it for refrigerator items and it will extend the life in the fride too.  The big craze is salad in a jar.




I purchased my jar lid attachments from Amazon.  Below is another example of how to use the jar lid attachment.







These attachment are GREAT!!  The super thing is you use the lid again and again.  A real money saver.

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Judging at the Fair





I was asked to be a judge at the county fair this year for home preserves.  But since I have never judged before I requested to come as a helper this year so I could see how everything works.

Oh it was wonderful!
The beautiful canned goods, baked goods, and dehydrated goods.  We judged adult class and then children's class.  Let me tell you there are some wonderful up and coming preservers and bakers out their.

There are many criteria areas judged for canned goods, these are just a few:
head space
appearance
labeling (what is it, date processed, etc.)
processing time - was the correct time for our altitude used
And many more but it was great fun and it was wonderful to see all the beautiful produce put by.

One young person entered dried apricots.  They were the very best non commercial I have ever seen.  Once the fair is over I'd like to ask them what their secret was, mine have never turned out so lovely.
Happy fair time.
a little bird





Saturday, August 9, 2014

Penny In Yo Pants

(8/11/14 addendum: this doesn't work with all skirts...  I'm sure the material makes a difference.  Knit fabric or light fabric is the best.  Many of my summer skirts hit just below the knee which is modest and cool for the summer weather.  But when you put a penny and rubber band in the mix it hikes that skirt to 3 or 4 inches above the knee...  just a word to the wise.  So for that length skirt I will go back to my garter style elastic to hold my skirt in place.)
  
I bike to and from work most days and I love skirts and wear them almost every day. I have an elastic band that I slide up garter style to slip over one edge of my skirt to keep it from flying up and exposing a bit too much...but Eva at Opulent Poppy just shared a GREAT idea!



You place the penny on the back side of your skirt and rubber band around the penny on the front side turning your skirt into pants (well almost).  This is perfect!
Thanks again Eva for sharing this great idea.

Monday, August 4, 2014


The finished jam.


Yesterday was 103 degrees so I decided to take advantage of the heat and finish drying the oven fruit leather outside.  I cover with lightweight material so the air can get in and out but not bugs.  
This is actually a shear curtain panel, it works great.





This is the leather from the dehydrator.  
I cut them into serving sizes leaving the parchment right on them for storage.




They are all in a large plastic tub for conditioning.


Post-Drying Treatment

Conditioning. When drying is complete, some pieces will be moister than others due to their size and placement during drying. Conditioning is a process used to evenly distribute the minimal residual moisture throughout all pieces. This reduces the chance of spoilage, especially from mold. To condition, place cooled, dried fruit loosely in large plastic or glass containers, about two-thirds full. Lightly cover and store in a warm, dry, well-ventilated place for four to 10 days. Stir or shake containers daily to separate pieces. If beads of moisture form inside, return food to drying trays for further drying, then repeat the conditioning step.


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