Monday, June 24, 2013

Corn Frolic

Hi friends!!!  I have been so excited to write again.  Would you believe I have three computers and none of them are working?  I finally remembered my daughter had a computer given to her by my father.  It is quite old, and I have spent about seven hours trying to get it to work!

I thought I might show you what my children and I got to do on Saturday.  We were invited to participate in a corn frolic!  I was over-the-moon excited to get to participate!  Somehow I overslept, so I got there later than I had planned and work was well underway.  There were many ladies and men gathered under shade trees husking corn, and what a beautiful morning it was for the work!  It felt like spring instead of summer.  The picture above shows one trailer of corn fresh from the field waiting to be husked and prepared.

I found a spot among everyone else, figured out what to do, and got busy.  My children helped too.

There is a saying among my friends here, "Many hands make light work."  Never have I seen that be more true than on this day.  Many hands turned lots and lots of corn into 704 pints of corn that helped fill many freezers!

Once the corn was husked, it was whisked away bushels at a time to be cleaned, blanched, and cooled.  My children also enjoyed helping with this.  Actually, many of the children liked to use this machine.  Several times I saw a long line of children waiting their turn.

These are the first images I saw as I rounded the back of the house.  This is where the corn was cleaned, blanched, and cooled.

Isn't that the cutest?  They were working together.  One
loaded and the other caught the cobs at the end and neatly
put them in the tub.

From here, the men brought baskets of corn in to the ladies for the last stages of preparation.  Some of the corn was cut from the cobs, 

but most was creamed.  This is what I did most of the time.

I certainly wasn't alone!  There was so much wonderful fellowship in this one room!  This is what I was searching for when I found my church!  I am such a blessed woman!!!

My bucket is that white one there in the middle, and that is
my friend Mari about to take a bite of that corn!  :)
I was sad to leave early, but Jacob had had enough, and I had cucumbers at home that had to be canned.  Reluctantly, I left.  Later in the afternoon Mari called and told me there were twenty pints at $0.49 each waiting on me to pick them up!  Really???  I was so excited I thought I might burst right through the ceiling!  For a year at various gatherings I had been eating corn that others had frozen the previous summer.  It was the best thing I think I have ever tasted!  Now I have my own!!!  I am still giddy!

So, now, my friends, if anyone ever asks you how one freezes 704 pints of corn a day, you kindly tell them "one" doesn't.  :)  Tell them, though, that if there are a lot of wonderful people gathered together, it can be done quite easily!

Until we meet again, may you be blessed!

Saturday, June 8, 2013


Life has so many twists and turns that sometimes one's head can go spinning out of control.  This week we had four starving puppies show up out of no where.  I have desperately been trying to get rid of them.  I don't handle fleas and knowing they need to be wormed so well.  Around the same time I learned my husband will be working half way across the country for six months, and that will mean he will have to find lodging there.  So while I have been trying to find homes for puppies, I have also been trying to find a 'home' for my husband.  His working so far away will also mean I have to get rid of all my pigs if my children and I are planning to visit him there.  At moments, I have felt as if my brain had been sucked up in an EF 5 vortex!  If that is you in your moment of life, this is for you!  :)

If tomorrow you sit behind me and notice fleas upon my head, let me know I need to be debugged.
If you notice the hairs are a bit to long, hand me a razor.
If you notice my feet are quite rough around the edges and the edges of the toenails are stained with dirt, tell me I need a pedicure.  Just know I might have already scrubbed and scrubbed to no avail.
If you notice the stench of pigs, tell me I need to check my shoes or not stand so close to the pigs when feeding.
If my hair is a mess, hand me a comb.
If you visit and my house is messy or dirty, ask where the cleaning supplies are kept. :)
If my children are a little wilder than normal, treat them as your own.
If I look like I've missed too many meals during the week, tell me I need to eat. (That's not likely to happen any time soon!)
If my eyes are bordered by dark circles, tell me I need a little more sleep.
If my children are a little behind on the standardized test, tell me I need to teach a little more.
If my little garden can't be seen, tell me I need to weed.
If my sod is a little brown, tell me I need to water.
If my grass is a little too tall, tell me I need to cut the lawn.
If the feed drum is empty, tell me I need to load it and take it to the feed store.
If you hug me and I wince in pain, tell me I need to wear sunscreen the next time I sit in a parking lot trying to find homes for abandoned puppies.
If I nod, tell me the day of rest doesn't mean to sleep through church.
If my cupboards are empty, tell me I need to go to the store.
If you find me in a crumpled heap upon the floor, tell me to find my boot straps and get a grip!

No matter how hard or crazy life gets sometimes, I am always able to remind myself life could always be much worse and that I have so many blessings for which I can offer thanks instead of focusing on the bad or hard.  Wouldn't Satan just love it if we wallowed in our pity and made our lives seem worse to ourselves than they really are?  I refuse!  God gave me his words and His promises.  Though things, may seem hard, I will praise Him in the storm!  He is mighty and able, and He has proved His wonders time and time again!  He is always teaching, stretching, and growing me.  I will not let myself doubt, worry, grumble, or complain now!  Yes, there are moments of weakness when I feel I can't handle anything else, but guess what.  I always find the strength to keep going.  Where does the strength come from?  "My help cometh from the Lord which made heaven and earth." Psalms 121:2  He will help me and lift me up if I just trust and persevere.

God is good, my friend!  He is greater than any challenge we face.  These moments are an opportunity to see Him, to trust Him.  The challenges and difficult moments are moments to taste and see that the LORD is good!  Yes, even in your situation!  Go forth and conquer the world!!!  Well, okay, at least conquer all the negative thoughts eating away at your joy.  ;)  You are loved, my friend!

Until we meet again, may you be blessed!

Sunday, June 2, 2013

Where Have You Been?

Hello, friends!  I am so sorry I have deserted my blog!  To be honest, I have just been uninspired.  In the midst of being uninspired, my dear husband thought it would be a good idea to order a bunch a sod with no forethought as to how to keep it all living.  The reason for wanting to put it out was very valid.  Each time he cuts grass weeds, the dust is horrible!  He can hardly breathe.  He is also hoping the aggressive growing grass will choke out some of the weeds.  BUT, I have been so tied to that sod!  I am guessing the sod is spread over an acre, and it has been so much work to keep it alive.  The ants have also had a hayday with my feet!

I am standing on the first piece of sod, and it stretches to the back edge
of the shop.

These are the pieces that get neglected the most since it is so hard to wind that heavy hose uphill back onto the reel when I am done.  Lazy, huh?  :)
This is the view from the other side of the house.  You can
see how the older, established sod is struggling since we
have had to cut back on watering it to water the new sod.
Thankfully, the established sod is on a sprinkler system!
That is just in the back yard.  The sod is also around the barn.

This sod stretches back to the pig pen.  All of this sod has to be watered by hand.  I thought a lot of this was going to die, and I have had to start watering it twice a day.  Notice the sand.  It does not hold water at all. That is the reason so much watering is required right now.  Once the sod is well established, and the roots are deep, so much watering will not be necessary unless we go through another dry spell.

The sod squares are spaced out with the hopes that they will eventually grow together.  This is a method my husband used one other time on a much smaller scale using small plugs from already established sod.  It worked, but it did take time and patience.

Each morning, watering begins around 7:00 and continues to around 11:30 when the sun is too high, and it is too hot.  Then, in the evening, water resumes around 4:30-5:00 until around 9:00-9:30.  The funny thing is that last year the area we live in was in an exceptional drought.  Well, we have had so much rain that drought was declared over.  In fact, the two or three weeks leading up to putting it down, it rained two or three times a week.  Since we put it down over two weeks ago, it hasn't rained more than a few drops!  We have very bad timing, huh?!

So, now you know where I have been.  :)  I am still here, though!  There have been a few good things to come from all of this.  I have started trying to lose weight.  Having to get up and water has made it much easier to get motivated to move.  Being in the sun a little everyday has given a hint of color to my pale face and arms.  Lastly, spending so much time alone outside in quiet has given me the chance to enjoy God's blessings in nature.  Having time to observe all those blessings has given me time to thank him for all he has done for me and given to me.  For every situation that could be viewed as bad, there is always opportunity to look for and see the good!

What projects do you have in progress?  I would love to hear from you!

Until we meet again, may you be blessed!