Tuesday, November 24, 2015
So, yes...Thanksgiving Eve, eve.....Tuesday. I was sitting here thinking... a few years ago, I had this grandiose idea that by now our Thanksgiving would be something right out of Little House books. You know..... "Pa goes out and kills the turkey and prepares it while I put together a meal with the food I had labored over the summer months to grow and preserve." Aaaaand, exit stage left. Later today I will take the big turkey from the freezer, and set it in water to start thawing....while I get the ingredients from the pantry and cupboard, some from jars that I had canned....some from cans that I had purchased where I bought the turkey. The pumpkin pie will be made from canned pumpkin....NOT from a real pumpkin that I had grown, baked, and mashed myself. Why? Well partly because this past summer was a terrible year for the garden....we didn't get one pumpkin. There are several things in the pantry that I bought.....that had been canned in factories. 10 years ago, when we bought this homestead, I had a goal....a plan. We would work hard...to "step back in time" We would turn this small piece of land into a homestead. Now, maybe your idea and mine may differ. According to "Wikipedia..... Modern homesteaders often use renewable energy options including solar electricity and wind power and some even invent DIY cars. Many also choose to plant and grow heirloom vegetables and to raise heritage livestock. Homesteading is not defined by where someone lives, such as the city or the country, but by the lifestyle choices they make." So there ya have it....that is what society think's when they hear the word "homestead" Now....as for me...Homesteading is a little different. We don't use "renewable energy" Not because we don't want to but because it is so expensive! I do put out 2 different gardens, and grow most of what we need...green beans, Lima beans, tomato's, beets, onions, carrots, potato's, and a few herbs. We have planted several different fruits and berries as well. Apples, peaches, grapes and strawberries. Some are producing well...enough for not only us but enough to share, others (the peaches) are just getting their start and will be several years until they are producing well. When we bought this little piece of land there was no hint that there had ever been farm animals or food grown here...we have worked hard to build up fences and housing and worked the land to produce....well.....produce. We don't have the big fancy farm tools that some homesteaders have. The work we have done here, we have done by hand....with hand tools. Oh, we have a rototiller....and chainsaws...and....well...that's about it for "modern tools" OK, so now I am rambling....back to the main subject, Thanksgiving. Times have changed. The kids are grown, they have families of their own. A few of them still come home for Thanksgiving which makes that day one of my favorite days. Kids, grand kids, laughter and memories. Remembering the "old days" and making new memories with grand babies. I don't bake like I used too when the kids were still home. We had a six ft folding table that I would set up a few days before Thanksgiving and fill with goodies. Chocolate chip,iced butter cookies ( the kids and I would make an evening of decorating them) , and peanut butter cookies, little Russian Tea Cakes... brownies, Peanut brittle, buckeyes, Banana bread, pumpkin bread, and pies....Pumpkin, apple and chocolate creme. Now, we are all older. The kids are grown and have kids of their own. We no longer have that six foot table. The desserts are now down to chocolate chip cookies and a pumpkin pie....some years I still make the pumpkin bread and buckeyes but the kids and grand kids don't stay long enough to eat them and we don't "need" them. So I will make the chocolate chip cookies and the pumpkin pie today. And just maybe...if there is time, I will make Banana bread. It's funny...and sad...how time changes our lives. Oh, it's not a bad thing. Looking around, our kids have grown up and started families....and they are making their own traditions. Now is the time in my husbands and mine lives to sit back...and watch the show. To watch the kids create their own family traditions that they will hand down to their kids. I know the day will come when the big dinner will not be made here. Hubby and I will pack up and go to one of the kids homes....and share their Thanksgiving traditions. Such is the way of life. But for now, we are still having Thanksgiving here....on our Homestead....and I have SO MUCH to do! Cleaning, baking, and getting the living room ready for the Christmas tree, another great holiday...that is changing as years go by.
Friday, November 6, 2015
This last week has been....Hmmmm...interesting. The emotional train has been on the fast track. It started with great weather, sunshine, warm...almost HOT. Mid 70's in November? *shakes head* I can't complain though....I was able to get quite a bit done. Then as the week went on...Things went south a little...or a lot. Thursday....I laid to rest one of my favorite barn cats. *Punkin* He was a 2 yr old, neutered orange tabby. He was big, and so full of love. Every day as I walked to the barn, he would meet me half way. We would stop there in the open field....greeting each other. We had a "thing" He would walk to me and "meow" I would stop and scratch his head. This always led to him rolling over and begging for tummy scratches. As I went in for the tummy tickles....he would grab my hand with all 4 paws and playfully bite my hand. Then he would jump up and we walked to the barn together. We had this routine for a long time now. Thursday morning...as I walked towards the barn...there was no Punkin. My heart raced. A lump filled my tummy. As I walked up to the barn, I see him, laying by the barn door. I can only surmise..he had been grazed by a car and he made it back to the pasture and laid down by the door. :( RIP my sweet Punkin. You will be missed.