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Saturday, January 31, 2009

Cheesemaking Revisited

1 hour mozzarella

For pictures, go here.

1 gallon milk
2 teaspoons citric acid dissolved in 1/4 C cool tap water
Stir together for 2 miuntes.
Heat to 88 degrees F.
Stir in 1 teaspoon calcium chloride dissolved in 1/4 C cool tap water.
Stir in 1/4 rennet tablet dissolved in 1/4 C cool tap water for 15 seconds.
Let it sit for 20 minutes until curd forms a clean break.
Cut curd into 1/2 inch cubes.
Heat curd to 108 degrees F.
Let it sit 10 more minutes.
Scoop into glass bowl using slotted spoon.
Heat in microwave 1 minute, knead the whey out with a spoon. Curd will start to grow smooth and shiny.
Heat 30 more seconds, add 2 teaspoons salt, and knead with spoon until cool enough to pick up and stretch.
Stretch until cheese is cool, form into ball, wrap in plastic wrap, store in fridge up to one week, or freeze.
PS We tapped the trees today. Look for maple syrup making posts.

Friday, January 30, 2009

Baby boobs

I received this email one too many times this week. So now you all must pay.

This picture?

Makes me mad. Wanna know why? Because they focus on "cure" and by "cure" they mean extremely expensive ways to cut cancer off with sharp knives and burn it out with radiation and weird poisonous chemcials.

Why does that anger me so? What in the world do I want, if not a "cure?"

How about we "find" a responsible food industry that stops force-feeding her antibiotics, pathogens, free radicals, and articificial hormones all in the form of genetically altered and over-processed foods that her little body does not recognize and cannot digest or utilize properly so that her cells go haywire and are overcome by mutant cells in the form of cancer? How about that?

How about don't feed that precious little girl any of that crap so she doesn't grow boobs by the time she's eight and prevent cancer so we can forget about curing her?

How about that.

Tell her mom to plant a garden, buy local, and get a cow, so I can stop having one.

With love, as always,


Monday, January 26, 2009

work it like a meme

Okay, so Joe did this thing over at the family blog: Top Photos of 2008.

So here are a few:

January 2008: (Joe)
April 2008: (Jocelyn)June 2008: (Jocelyn)August 2008: (Joe)October 2008: (Jocelyn)
November 2008: (Jocelyn)

Now, you go over to your own blog and post your top 5 pictures of 2008

Have fun.



Sunday, January 25, 2009

Sunday Stills...Potluck

I'll bring the cute baby for everyone to cuddle.



Brilyn was taking a nap, and Cade asked for a bath, and he was just so darn cute, I thought I would do a little photo shoot.

Friday, January 23, 2009

Who loves me?

Pamela Loves Me.

And I will now propose to her.

Pamela? Will you marry me?

I love you, and I think, based on your cake, that we would have a long and wonderful life together.

Baptist Cowboy

A cowboy, who is visiting Wyoming from Texas, walks into a bar and orders three mugs of Coors. He sits in the back of the room, drinking a sip out of each one in turn. When he finishes them, he comes back to the bar and orders three more.The bartender approaches and tells the cowboy, "You know, a mug goes flat after I draw it. It would taste better if you bought one at a time."The cowboy replies, "Well, you see, I have two brothers. One is in Arizona , the other is in Colorado . When we all left our home in Texas , we promised that we'd drink this way to remember the days when we drank together. So I'm drinking one beer for each of my brothers and one for myself."The bartender admits that this is a nice custom, and leaves it there. The cowboy becomes a regular in the bar, and always drinks the same way. He orders three mugs and drinks them in turn.One day, he comes in and only orders two mugs. All the regulars take notice and fall silent. When he comes back to the bar for the second round, the bartender says, "I don't want to intrude on your grief, but I wanted to offer my condolences on your loss."The cowboy looks quite puzzled for a moment, then a light dawns in his eyes and he laughs."Oh, no, everybody's just fine," he explains, "It's just that my wife and I joined the Baptist Church and I had to quit drinking. Hasn't affected my brothers though."
WARNING: Extreme peppy-ness and crazy enjoyment of aging contained in the writing below to the point of obnoxious-ness and nausea.
Yep. Today's my BIRTHDAY!
And I like it!
And I am going out for dinner tonight!
And I had chocolate chips pancakes for breakfast!
And my baby girl keeps saying, "Happy Birthday, Birthday Girl!"
And I am going to take a nap!
And read a book!
And eat more chocolate than previously considered humanly possible!
And start every sentence with and and end with an !
And it's all because I got borned! (This phrase is one of my particular favorites, got borned, that is.)
And, well, I oughta go do fun things, like eat ice cream and play Candy Land!
And I got lots of calls on my birthday and everyone sang me a birthday song!
And, YAY!

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Family in need

To my praying readers:
Please visit my friend Megan's blog-

And do some praying for and encouraging of this family.

Thanks guys,

Tomorrow's my birthday
Tomorrow's my birthday
Tomorrow's my special day
Tomorrow's My Day.

I like my birthday. Because it's all about the presents, that's why. At Christmas it's all about Jesus and family and traditions. But my brithday? It's all about me and my presents and cake and ice cream, which are all things I like most especially.

Why do I like presents, you ask? You are surprised by my love of gifts since I mostly eschew things material? It's because presents remind me that people love me. It's my love language. When I look around me and see little things that others have brought me, I think, they were thinking of me and picked this for me and gave it to me, because they LOVE ME. For example, Kara, the BFF, gave me a write-your-own-recipes-in-it-cookbook a few years back, and EVERY time I use it, which is pretty much daily, I think, Kara loves me.

So, now you know the truth about me. I like little things that people give to me, and I keep them forever and ever and ever and I don't throw them away. For example, my great-grampa gave me a little brush and comb set when I was like, 11. And, I still have the brush. I can't use it, because now I have short hair, and I never actually could use it because it is one of those round brushes that make my hair worse than when I started and always ends with an impromptu hair cut because it gets inextricably stuck in the tresses.

So. Now I feel verified and clarified so that I can post my birthday wish list without anyone thinking I am overly superficial.
1. A subscription to MaryJane's Farm mag.
2. Colorful gel pens for making my to-do list.
3. Emergen-C because it works like coffee for me in the afternoon when I can no longer actually drink coffee if I wish to sleep that night. At all. And because it tastes good.
4. Bubble bath that is not made of weird chemicals and that smells like lavendar because there is actually lavendar in it. And lotion. Because my hands are cracked and bleeding that's why. And because Bag Balm does not have a very feminine essence.
5. A maid.
6. GOOD cake.

Well, that about sums it up. Please tell my husband what to get me. Thanks then.


Monday, January 19, 2009

Free stuff


So the thought behind doing One World- One Heart (as far as I can tell) is that when you give things away, you make friends.

So I am giving away a pint of maple syrup from our very own maple trees. You will receive your prize: 1. When it becomes available, 2. If you win by leaving me a comment ON THIS POST. The winner will be announced on February 12th at which time I may or may not have the syrup ready. You may have to wait a bit, that's how sugaring works. Anyway, I digress.

Here's a picture of how your special syrup will be made.

And finally, you must tell me in 100 words or less why it is you like me so much. Or, at least something you like about my blog. You must give me a compliment. I likes me some comments that are compliments.
So. Bring on the compliments/entries.


AKA Calzone.
Local-ish style
Make a bread dough:
4 cups flour of choice (occident here)
2 T sweetness of choice (raw sugar here)
2 T fat of choice (olive oil here)
1 1/2 t salt of choice (plain old here)
2 t yeast
12 oz liquid of choice (6 oz yogurt, 6 oz warm water here)
Then, add layers of ricotta and mozz (Thanks Clara darling) and ham (nameless CAFO pig, sorry) and onion (a la Pamela's CSA rejects) and spices (fr0m the good Mennonites) and hot peppers (from, hold on walking to fridge....oh the poor things don't even have a birthplace, just a distributor). Seal it up Calazonia style and bake at 350 for 25 minutes.
Wondering about Calazonia? My dear sweet Brilyn baby calls it that. And I think it is just way too cute. So I call it that too.
OH! And serve the Calazonia with your own sweet tomato sauce that you canned yourself if available (mine is still available but in an alarmingly dwindling numbers of jars).

You should also know that Kara has a giveaway that totally goes along with my homecooking theme. You should go now.

Friday, January 16, 2009

And also? A meme.

This meme:
The six one- sixth folder, sixth picture, six people, etc. But I already did it, so...
I am changing it to 12/12 and I am not going to tag anyone. Sorry. But other people I know are doing it, so go there to see them.
Dayton Time (go here first, cuz she memed me, see her Monday post)
Simple Life (and also go here because she got memed too)
But, anyway, here is my photo:
It's my barn! In the summer. BC, that is to say, before Clara. This picture makes me feel happy and reminds me to remember to trust to hope that this frigid (and by frigid I mean frickin freezin Mr. Bigglesworth) weather will not stay forever. And that reminds me to remember that every season in our lives comes to pass. Whether you find yourself in winter, spring, summer, or fall, be aware that is fleeting and one day you will have a hard time remembering the details. So.
Enjoy the summer barn while it's here, and don't hurry the winter barn, because life passes quickly enough.

And it was good

So, those skinny roosters? Were yummy. (And I am really proud of that because they were not very promising-looking as frozen little skinny chickens) Here's how:

1. Boil said skinny chickens in 1 gallon of water, with 1 minced onion, 2 minced cloves of garlic, and 2 T cider vinegar. For hours and hours.

2. Remove scanty portions of meat from skinny chickens. Put the naked carcass (nasty word, that one) back in the pot and boil it down till you have a lovely, highly nutritious chicken stock.

3. Place shredded meat in a bowl, add Buffalo sauce (1/2 stick melted butter, 1/2 cup Red Hot, 1 T honey).

4. Eat as sandwiches on homemade hard rolls.

So, I would like to thank you for your suggestions, the support I received helped to make out dinner special.



We also saw this small 8-point during our walk in Letchworth.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Reverse recipe post

Hello all you good cooks,

Here's the part of the show where you all come out and give me a recipe. I have three skinny little rat-like rooster carcasses thawing on my counter. How, may I ask, might I make them taste good with as few ingredients and as little work as possible? Perhaps you have a slow cooker recipe specifically designed for nasty little skinny @$$ roosters?

Please let me know ASAP. I also have egg noodles if anyone wants to provide a great recipe for chicken noodle.

Thanks all.



PS Here are some pics from a walk Joe and I took in Letchworth Park over Christmas break. It was a beautiful day.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Now entitled, "Shepherd's Pie"

Trying to eat locally in the middle of January in New York State? I am and I was pretty successful with this recipe:

1 pound New York potatoes, peeled and chopped
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 pound ground venison
1 large onion from my garden, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic from the farmer's market, finely chopped
1 (14 ounce) can beef broth (not local, sorry)
2 tablespoons ketchup
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1 teaspoon mild curry powder
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1 cup tomato sauce that I canned myself from tomatoes I grew myself
16 ounces frozen veggies from last summer's garden (I used green beans)

1/4 cup milk (from Clara)
1 tablespoon butter (also from Clara)
1 cup shredded extra-sharp Cheddar cheese (New York cheddar)
salt and pepper to taste

Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Add potatoes, and cook until tender but still firm, about 15 minutes; drain, and return to pan.
While potatoes are boiling, heat oil in a large skillet. Cook ground venison with onion and garlic until evenly brown. Stir in beef broth, ketchup, soy sauce, Worcestershire sauce, and curry powder. Bring to a boil, and simmer 3 to 4 minutes. Mix cornstarch with a little water to form a paste, then stir into skillet with tomato sauce and green beans. Cook until thickened; season with salt and pepper. Spoon into a casserole dish.
Preheat oven on broiler setting. Add milk and butter to cooked potatoes, and whip until smooth and creamy. Spoon over meat mixture. Sprinkle top with shredded cheese.
Place under broiler for 3 to 5 minutes, or until cheese is melted and speckled with brown.




Wordless Wednesday

Friday, January 09, 2009

Happy Friday

So, I am really loving Animal Vegetable Miracle, except for the author's constant barage of bogus eveolutionary theory. However, I still highly recommend the book, just as it was highly recommended to me. Very eye-opening and inspiring.
Well, I really shouldn't be sitting at the computer, my children are in the middle of lunch, and I like to sit with them and have conversations.
I just wanted to say "hi." And Happy Friday.

Wednesday, January 07, 2009


Whoa! Two posts in one day? Crazy!
But, this is so funny, I didn't want to forget about it.
Of course, it's Brilyn.
She was playing mail man and I mentioned that my dad was a mail man. She wanted to know why he wasn't delivering mail anymore, and told her "because he's retired."
She responded "Because he was real-tired from....milking the goats?"
I want to write something here...but there is an awful lot of shrieking going on round here and it keeps resetting my brain so I can't remember what the heck I was going to say. So this? Will be a random post.
For example, "HOTTIE HOTTIE HOTTIE!" That quote comes from Cade, he must be talking to me. Wait! Now he is saying "nigh nigh pice pice pice PI-EECE!" That means "put me to bed woman, with that little thing that pacifies me."
And, speaking Cade speak, that reminds me of his word that sounds like money. I finally (Joe did, actually, and he told me) realized he means, "Barney." Great.
I apologize for the almost complete incoherence of that last sentence, but I am not going to back and change it, just for fun.
Okay, so now that my kids are watching "Lost in the woods" a cousin (might I just add that I don't like it when people say 'cousint' with a T sound at the end? It just grates on me.) to "Stranger in the woods" both are fun movies based on funner books. (I don't mind it when people say funner just so long as I am absolutely sure they did it on purpose and not because they don't know about 'more fun')
Speaking of more fun- growing things in pots in the winter makes the dreary days more fun. My sister got me a potted herb set for Christmas and I planted it already and it is growing already. And the little thyme plants are peeking their little heads up and Hanna (who is preggy) mentioned that it is a sign from God. "Baby thyme" MUST mean it's baby time. But, despite the preggy pressure on all sides (Pamela, Kara, Rene, Hanna, and the list goes on and on and on), I am still planning a baby for May 21st, 2010. Which means no preggy till August. In case you wonder about the May 21st due date, it is necessary because Brilyn is May 19th and Cade is May 20th. So baby next must be the 21st.
And finally- I will share something that I stole directly from Joe. And I mean it to be a meme.
Top 5 Blessings of 2008.
1. Clara Belle the cow. What an abundance she provides. I am in dairy products heaven. DRINK MORE MILK! EAT MORE CHEESE! DOUSE IT IN BUTTER! Yay to me. And, she is the sweetest little puppy cow ever to live in this world. And, the work involved in caring for her keeps me fit and gets me outside twice a day and lifts my spirit without fail. And makes my muscles big, which is kinda cool. Love her.
2. I am done with my Master's work. The end.
3. My family. Health and happiness. Cute cute babies. Handsome hard-working husband.
4. New friends. I made some in real life and in the blogsphere and I am glad I did and they keep life fresh. New people are neat. And the new people I met are neater than average. And have been encouraging and inspiring. And I certainly can't talk about friendship without a shout out to Kara, who once was a new friend- ah....11 years ago. That makes me feel old. Sheesh. (If you feel sad that you didn't get a personalized shout out, you'll have to put on your big-kid pants and realize that Kara just gets special treatment, it's just the way it is. She's a BFF and they get specialized shout outs.) And now moving ON to...
5. More wisdom. I feel that I learned a lot this year and have grown a lot. I recently realized that I have become an adult even though I am still, ah, marching to my own drummer. And, it's cool to be a grown up. I think of others. I am (Mostly) responsible. I know what's important to me and (try to) live that way.
Well, speaking of thinking of others, my son really needs a drink and a paci and some nigh nigh.
And, the movie is over.
And peace to you.
OH! Wait! The meme part is that once you have read this post, you must make your own list and post it somewhere conspicuous, like your own blog. And link to me and I will link to you. The end. (Because my brain just had its reset button pushed for the 100th time and when that happens one MUST STOP WRITING!)

Kara posted her TOP 5, go see.

Saturday, January 03, 2009

Waste not...

To begin, let me give you some background on my own upbringing, and subsequently, the raising of my children as well. Three important sayings to instill the value of conservation of resources:
1. Waste not, want not.
2. Take all you want, eat all you take.
3. Eat what you can, and what you can't eat- can.
And so, the other say I noticed that a number of pantry items had been nibbled by little rodents, namely, mice. And so I cleaned it all up and wrote a note to my hubby to set some traps ( and preferably empty them before I come downstairs in the morning. I am not fond of being greeted by squished little mousy faces before coffee.) The next day however, I made it downstairs just in time to hear this:
Brilyn: "What is that?"
Joe: "A mouse."
Brilyn: "What is it doing?"
Joe: "It's dead."
Brilyn: "Why is it dead?"
Joe: "It died in the trap."
Brilyn: "Did we kill it?"
Joe: "Yes."
Brilyn: "What are you DOING?"
Joe: "Putting it in the garbage."
Brilyn: "But if we killed it we have to EAT IT!"

LOL. This reminds me of the time last summer when we butchered some of our young roosters. We explained to Brilyn that since the roosters don't lay eggs, we kill them and eat them. Later that week, I heard her playing with Cade: "Cade hold still so I can kill you. You're a boy and you don't lay eggs, so we'll just have to eat you." Talk about radical feminism. LOL.

On to another topic. I read a great book, Chistmas with Anne and Other Stories, by L.M. Montgomery. I would just like to reiterate that if you want to become a better person, read the Anne books. Montgomery writes with such a tenderness toward humanity, it just makes you want to be nice to people. Even mean ones. She helps you remember that neurotic people probably have good cause to be that way, and a little kindness toward them just might make a difference in that person's life.

And now I am reading Animal, Vegetable, Miracle, by Barbara Kingsolver. I think I am going to like it quite a bit. It might even join the ranks of Rural Renaissance and See You in a Hundred Years, two of my favorite books. I'll let you know.

Christmas was a big success. We gave gift baskets which included things like venison jerky, Sweet Peach wine, cherry cordial, blackberry cordial, apple butter, hot pepper and cranberry jelly, blackberry peach preserves, corned venison, and venison breakfast sausage (all of which we made with our own little hands) and other things like popcorn and dark chocolate and beer, which we didn't make, but we didn't pay cash money for either. Those items were traded for milk. And everyone seemed to really enjoy their gifts.

Our little family Christmas was fun as well. Brilyn received her wished-for pink fishing pole from Santa Claus, and Cade got a Hess truck. Their stocking were also well stocked with socks and underwear, tooth brushing equipment, and bath toys. Joe gave me the gift of music- he found someone to come give my piano the once over which will include, but may not be limited to, tuning, fixing the sustain and damper pedals, replacing ivories, and unsticking those keys which are currently quite stuck. Happy. And Joe received from Cade a travel tea mug that brews loose leaf tea in one minute, from Brilyn a set of gutting knives, and from me the game The Settlers of Catan. If you are unfamiliar with this game, please click on that link. I bought it for him because he likes it, and because I can beat him at it.

I will download some pictures of our Christmas when I find the camera. I have a feeling it is in Joe's hunting bag which is currently out hunting geese with Joe.

And now, what you've all been waiting for: It's almost my birthday! YAYAYAY! (I really like my birthday.)

Well, I am sure I will talking to you soon enough- I am looking forward to a new year and new daily routine that will allow for suppertime and three blog posts a week. We'll see how that goes.


About Me

About Me
I love Jesus, my hubby, my 6 kiddos, my farm, good books and good food.