Monday, October 29, 2007
Wednesday, October 24, 2007
I love to correspond with old friends now many miles away and making pretty cards to send those often very long letters in is a real delight. My friends in Texas really inspired me last year when they gave me a set of nine beautiful homemade cards for my birthday. After that I started looking for new ideas for card making and was able to find some great magazines on the subject at our local library. Also there are some neat websites (card maps here) and blogs out there that I have found inspiration on.
Last week my friend at A Heart for Praise did a great post on leaf stamping. I had just been wishing I had a leaf stamp to make cards for the fall . Now I know I have a whole yard full of "leaf stamps". So I tried her idea with various leaves and colors and was able to make this card with them. I will add one more tip to using many colors, use a different leaf for each color or you will have a nice dark leaf print on your light colored ink pad, as I now have! Oh well, live and learn.
Have a great Fall!!!
Saturday, October 20, 2007
Friday, October 19, 2007
Apple season is fully here and I am taking advantage of it. Michigan has it’s many beautiful orchards and farms that supply us wonderful fresh apples this time of year. Last week we finally visited one of these orchards. Lined up in a machine shed were neat rows of different kinds of apples. It was a hard choice, but we came home with some Honeycrisp, Jonagold, and Macintosh, mostly Macintosh.
The day after our little trip to the orchard was spent in the kitchen preparing all those apples. Pies, applesauce, apple butter, apple tea and apple jelly are the results of lots of hard, but fun work. My dad especially appreciated all this as he is the apple fan of the family.
What really excited me about all this cooking though was how little waste! In the past when I did my apple cooking I would pull out my apple peeler/corer/slicer, run my apple through it and leave about as much scraps to throw away as I did apples to cook. So this year I decided to put all those peels and cores to work.
First thing they were going to make me was apple jelly. I have never made apple jelly before, I had heard about it but I am not the jelly maker so I never tried to make it. But feeling industrious and having one last box of pectin in the cabinet I took the plunge and looked up a recipe online. I found a few here and here. I used the later and found it very similar to other jelly recipes, you cook the apples down (about 30 minutes) and mash them through a sieve to make juice, then use the juice to make jelly. I’m afraid my jelly didn’t set up very firm, not that there is any fault in the recipe – I actually hope to try it again – but that my pectin was many years old. It is not going to waste though, the resulting syrup is wonderful on pancakes, in oatmeal and to sweeten apple tea.
Making apple jelly has led me to think of other ways to use apple scraps. You could make juice from the cores and peels, syrup from the juice, puree from the peels and also apple tea from dried peels. Although haven’t tried all these ways yet, except the tea, I think they would be wonderful ways of being frugal.
When we really try to be creative with the things we already have it is amazing how much we are blessed. Can you imagine, all those things I made from just six dollars worth of apples? Frugality isn’t just an idea, it is a frame of mind – creativity that can be used to bless our families.
Thursday, October 11, 2007
I am pleased to hear that Jennie Chancey and Stacey McDonald have released their new book Passionate Housewives: Desperate for God . I have been hearing about it from a friend who has already read it and I am really excited to get my hands on it. So I was really happy to see that Biblical Womanhood is giving TEN copies away. Please visit Crystal's blog to enter your name and don't wait, comments close Saturday Oct. 13th.
Monday, October 08, 2007
I found this post on ministers' quotes from the 18th century on Home Living blog. I was glad to find such wonderful encouragements yet disheartened to see that the Church has come so far from preaching these truths. The comments on the post are quite interesting also.
Thursday, October 04, 2007
No piled-up wealth, no splendor of material growth, no brilliance of artistic development, will permanently avail any people unless its home life is healthy, unless the average man possesses honesty, courage, common sense, and decency, unless he works hard and is willing at need to fight hard; and unless the average woman is a good wife, a good mother, able and willing to perform the first and greatest duty of womanhood, able and willing to bear, and to bring up as they should be brought up, healthy children, sound in body, mind, and character, and numerous enough so that the race shall increase and not decrease.There are certain old truths which will be true as long as this world endures, and which no amount of progress can alter. One of these is the truth that the primary duty of the husband is to be the home-maker, the breadwinner for his wife and children, and that the primary duty of the woman is to be the helpmate, the housewife, and mother...Into the woman's keeping is committed the destiny of the generations to come after us...The woman's task is not easy--no task worth doing is easy--but in doing it, and when she has done it, there shall come to her the highest and holiest joy known to mankind; and having done it, she shall have the reward prophesied in Scripture; for her husband and her children, yes, and all people who realize that her work lies at the foundation of all national happiness and greatness, shall rise up and call her blessed.
-President Theodore Roosevelt