Sunday, November 06, 2022

A Blessed Sunday

 It was a blessed Sunday! A busy Sunday, a great Sunday. Allie, Stacia and I were all able to share a bit about various happenings in our lives, we watched friends and loved ones take the step of baptism, we enjoyed lunch with Jamin, raced Allie to work and then received a surprise winter survival package....great Sunday. 

The biggest blessing of the day was witnessing our son in law baptize our granddaughter! Bella has wanted to do this for some time and BreZaak let her do it today. 

This afternoon the doorbell rang...I went out and there was a package on the doorstep. I thought it might be the tea I'd ordered...but it didn't look right. I became more perplexed as I examined it. Michael, Stacia and I gathered around. We thought it had to be someone who knew us well, but we didn't recognize the writing on the card. 

Look at this loot! Even a cheeseball and wheat thins! Luke, Krista and Kids dropped it on our door, rang the bell and ran. The card encouraged us to "Keep Calm and Winter On." I love this idea! 

Saturday, November 05, 2022

Saturday Fun

 Saturday morning...everyone other than Grandpa and I slept in...Grandpa has a routine. It felt good to get some housecleaning done. 

Stacia had invited a couple of gals from youth group to come hang out at the house. They made cookies and played games. WAIT - how is that brunette in the middle? 

Josiah, Carrie and Livie are back in Alaska! We haven't seen them since our family dinner in September. It was great to see them again.  Next up, Jamin showed up....followed quickly by Arielle and the two younger boys. Oh, the fun changes we observe in Little Buddy. He confidently ran in, jumped at the table, and waited for a cookie. I went to get a drink and he said, "Tea, tea." Yep, I've won a little friend. 

Ah, to have the energy of a two year old...or two two year olds. LOL 

You can't see anything but Little Buddy's hands, but they are playing a beautiful duet. 
📷by Carrie

This batch is not very fizzy....but we shall see. It's a start. 

Friday, November 04, 2022

Enjoying the Day

 Stacia and I tried to get out early for breakfast study, but it takes more time to get the animals watered and to coax the van into warmth.  Things became complicated very fast when I put the keys into the ignition to warm up the van, scraped windows and then heard the doors LOCK...with the keys INSIDE and the van ON.  Eventually, we made it to the cafe where our warm drinks awaited. LOL 

I spent the day cleaning the kitchen from the week of canning and prepping a meal for a young family. We made rolls, cookies, two roasts (one for them and one for me) and added salad and veggies. Michael and I delivered the meal, enjoyed baby snuggles and conversation. 

Millie LOVES the snow...maybe more than the rest of us? 

Thursday, November 03, 2022

Bible Study & Apples


The chickens aren't the only ones getting used to new morning routines. Allie and I had to dig out the van before we left for study this morning. We enjoyed our discussion about women of great faith today...

My goal is to finish all the apples BEFORE the next co-op day (Nov 8th). I had three cases left this morning and I hoped to finish them all.....

 I chopped all the apples and started them simmering. I was committed to finishing them all - the boxes were empty. 

Stacia got up at 0700 to work on school so she could help with apples in the afternoon. I appreciated her initiative. 

The snow does bring the walk out cooler to life....

We did it. I finally got another batch of kombucha done...and 45 quarts of applesauce done. Done for 2022. 

The moose are back.  I love them this time of year. 

Michael had an appointment this afternoon and then ran by the store for me and to the feed store for the chickens.  This was the sunset when he pulled back into the driveway. 

Unimpressed Chickens

Our new chicks have grown into great layers. They have stayed outside in all sorts of weather, sun...wind...rain and even the light snow on Oct 10th. We wondered how they would do when "winter" really hit, today we found out. 

This group RACES out of the henhouse each morning. They push, fight and skirmish to see who can reach me first. They surround me as they advocate for the treats in the scrap bucket! 

But, WAIT! What is THIS? They raced out to explore and then just as quickly began trying to get back up the ramp and into the coop. 

They reached an impasse with those who were trying to get out as determined as those trying to get back into the coop. They've finally discovered weather they want to avoid.  We expect their egg production to slow down...but so far we are still getting 19 eggs a or two less. Not bad. 

I think this snow may be here to stay! If so, does that mean this is winter? It's come a couple of weeks later than usual...

Wednesday, November 02, 2022

Reprieve from Apples

 Yes, I had a reprieve from apples today. I probably should have worked for a bit...but I didn't. 

Have I mentioned how DARK it is in the mornings. Michael has reminded me that daylight savings is coming and then the sun will rise earlier....of course, it will get dark SOONER on the other end...In any event it is hard to water animals when one can't find the bowl. It's a bit spooky too - though I'm quite sure the neighborhood grizzly has found a place to hunker down. We are left with moose in the garden - and I don't mind if they visit now. LOL 

I spent several hours with BreZaak's kids today. Bre had an appointment. This little gal is coming soon - I can tell these things. ::snort:: That and the fact that she is due in 17 days. The big excitement at their house is the boys have scored their own room with BIG KID BUNK BEDS! I absolutely LOVE these bunk beds. The steps are great, and they form a bookshelf - which is filled with Tonka trucks as of this morning. 

Jojo (Josiah) is rather proud of his ability to climb to the top of Gideon's bed. Rumor is no one is sleeping in this room just yet. 

We spent the bulk of our time reading. I loved it. They brought me book after book, and I was happy to read each one...these kids have a wide assortment of reading interests. 

Michael ran over to help Bre take the girls' beds apart when I got home.  I had 2 1/2 hours when I got home where I could have worked on apples before dinner and youth/women's group...I decided not to get it all out. 

In other exciting news, Larissa sent a recording of baby Noah's heartbeat. I love the technology of today. 

Tuesday, November 01, 2022

Apples and Adventure

Y'all it is DARK these days. The sun came up around 9:30 this morning. By that time, I'd already been out of the house for 90 minutes.  I was enjoying a bit of tea and play with CoRielle's boys. Cory and Arielle have staff meetings on Tuesday mornings, and then Cory takes Little Buddy to therapy and Arielle takes Benny and Danny to Story Hour at the Library.  Danny and Little Buddy are bursting with new phrases and cute antics. I guess that's the 2-year-old phase! I'm especially fond of "Walk away!" and "Got it?" 

When I got home, I started right away on APPLES!  We processed one case yesterday. We got through two more cases today.  Michael joined in the fun and when Stacia finished school, she joined us too. I was about to throw in the towel when Dad commented that my applesauce was much better than the stuff we've been buying at the store. LOL 

I chopped apples and got them boiling down while talking with Michael and Allie and processing adult transitions.

It's cold enough now that we are once again enjoying our walk-out cooler/freezer. The first year I melted a part on our saucer so now we take the time to cool apples before saucing them. 

Allie ran off to work. Michael and I continued playing with apples. We are getting mighty tired of apples. 

As Michael pushed apples through, the saucer, I cleaned and warmed jars and filled them with applesauce. 


I got one canner full boiling...and began working on the next. Stacia rotated hot apples outside to cool and cooler apples inside for Michael to sauce...and we talked adult transitions with Stacia. 

At some point I'll share more of the call God is placing on the girls' women's conference and then youth conference...and what the calls are doing in my heart....or maybe I'll have the girls share.  Anyway, lots of conversations going on around here since September. 

Eventually, all the apples had transformed to applesauce which was in jars. I had two canners running...and we processed 26 quarts today. We are 1/2 way through our stack of 6 cases and have 40 quarts. We're on track for our 80 quarts...but now I'm wondering if I should have gotten a bit more as Stacia would really love me to make some fruit leather...and we need the 80 quarts for oatmeal and GG's meds. LOL 

About the time the last two canners were simmering I got a text. CoRielle were heading out on an adventure, and we were invited to join them. In the end GG and Michael stayed home. Stacia and I headed up the road...past the shooting range, UPPPPPP the hill and then DOOOWWWN the hill(no guardrails) gravel roads, and potholes the size of a VW bug. Suddenly the road ended right at the river.... The river is in that in-between phase; almost winter, but still fall - half frozen. There was a gentleman standing in the midst of the ice taking photos of eagles and such. 

I would have been content to simply sit and take in the view, but we were at this location for a specific purpose. Cory knew a whole lotta sockeye salmon are spawning in this river. The water is swarming with salmon...and where there are salmon...there are also eagles. It was gorgeous. We knew the light would be bad for photos, but we were happy to experience it today anyway. In a bit the river will be frozen, and the salmon will sadly be dead. Their life cycle completed.  Can you make out the salmon? 

Brrrr! It was 22*. What IS that girl of ours thinking to be outside in shorts?????

Stacia and I discovered a new trail. Maybe we can hike it next year... or maybe not... it looks like bear country. 

Benny wanted to stop for hot chocolate, but I suspected there were other plans in the works. He told me, "Baachan you love having Arielle come over." 

Yes, Benny, I do. I told him I love having all of them come over. He observed I have a lot of kids. 

Michael had enjoyed a conversation with Earl, his brother in Colorado, while we were out. I made a quick dinner of soup and grilled cheese sandwiches. We took the time to respond to some correspondence.

This is a satisfying sight.

We are calling it a day. Tomorrow will be another busy day.