Yesterday we spent the day with a homesteading family, who has a remarkable story of voluntarily going Electricity-free for a year! This was so inspiring and we conversed about farm animals & transitioning to simple living! 0o0h, have I got some ideas! hehe
*rolls up sleeves* I'm ready! :)
Work day at the Cottage
Since the weather was nice, I got out my washtub and soap, and started heating water on the stove to wash my 1860s dresses. (They smelled of campfire smoke from the re-enactment!) Well the younger girls were so interested that they insisted on helping, so we had alot of fun!
Starting on the first dress...
*2 pkgs active dry yeast (or 5 tsp), *1 cup warm milk (or milk substitute) *2 eggs, *2 tsp sea salt, *1 cup warm water, *1/3 cup honey (or brown sugar, *5.5 cups flour, *1/4 cup shortening, butter or oil
In a large mixing bowl, dissolve yeast in warm water. To the dissolved yeast, add the warm milk, honey, eggs and 3 cups of the flour. Mix, cover and allow to rest for 30 mins. Stir in salt and pour the dough on top of the remaining flour. Carefully work in the flour..this may be sticky!! Add in your oil/shortening. Knead dough..try not to add in too much flour, it's ok if it's somewhat oily and sticky :) Place dough in lightly oiled bowl, turn over so the dough is coated. Cover and place in a warm (70-80 degree) environment until doubled in size (I wait exactly 1 hour.) Punch down, cover and let rest another hour (or until double in size) Punch down, remove from bowl and divide dough in half. Cover, let rise for 10 mins. I then braided mine to rise on a cookie pan, but here's the traditional way: Roll each half into a rectangle (14x7). Starting from the shorter side, roll up tightly, pressing dough into roll. Pinch edges and ends to seal. Place in a greased loaf pan, cover w/ cloth and let rise an hour.
Bake loaves in a 375 degree oven for 30 minutes or until golden brown to your satisfaction! Makes 2 loaves, and easily doubled :)
Our vintage well (pump) house...
Rain soaked blossoms...
This is the dewberry patch area, and the center is somewhat of a marsh right now :) That's ok, because I think being able to retain extra rainwater will help during those upcoming dry spells! The dormant canes are showing signs of new leaves coming soon. I love going to the back of the property on rainy, cloudy days like this..more bird's singing, the air seems refreshingly more clear.
"Every gardener knows that under the cloak of winter lies a miracle ... a seed waiting to sprout, a bulb opening to the light, a bud straining to unfurl. And the anticipation nurtures our dream."