Friday, December 2, 2011

Inspired.

I'm so grateful for our cottage; tucked away in the country. A small piece of the world where all we have is all that we need. I believe that a home is a lovely reflection of what inspires you.
~A life filled with gratitude often has so many quiet, beautiful moments.
~Recently, we traveled up the back roads to visit friends for the weekend. Surrounded by the beauty of the season, we all walked from their home up to the town.
~What a delight to walk through the historic neighborhoods.The homes had so much character, and I enjoyed hearing some town history from some of the locals. After going through the outdoor market, we took our time as we walked back to the house.

~Inside, we talked together as supper was being prepared.

~At a local estate sale, I ended up taking home a quilt from the 1860's-1870's. Originally the local museum was going to buy it, but they didn't come back so I was able to talk the price waaay down! I'm looking forward to mending it by hand this winter.

~A tree leaning against our old shed. Rustic textures of the season.
~ We each try to gather a basket of pecans daily...My sister was coming down to the house after checking on the chickens and bringing in a few eggs.

~The wall I'm standing in front of is an enclosed porch my dad recently built onto the back of the cottage..it's made entirely of wood from our own trees that we chopped down last winter. //Second-Hand Treasures: Crocheted shawl $0.50--Vintage dress from an estate sale $3.00
~Preparing for dinner, fresh green beans are washed and sorted.
~
We harvested quite a bit of peanuts..So far we've made boiled peanuts, but I look forward to roasting and grinding them for homemade peanut butter..
~
With these extra green tomatoes, I'll be using them to make a relish. Secondhand Treasure: Vintage 1940's apron (found at an antique mall) $3.50
~In the garden, this is the perfect time for dividing up the flowers.
~My brother made homemade Reese's Cups! I thought it was pretty creative... All he did was layer melted chocolate & peanut butter in a cupcake liner, then pop in the freezer!
~The English peas in the cottage garden are doing well! Since our recent rainstorms, they've actually grown quite a bit and are ready for trellising.
~My dad went and picked up a free load of farm-yard manure, and my sister helped unload it into the wooden compost crates he built.
~
As our meal cooks over an open fire, the wood smoke rises into the air, revealing the sun rays.
~

Several baskets filled with pecans. It's a little overwheming thinking about us shelling all those, but its worth it in the end....right? haha! So much for a pecan shortage this year ;)
~My dad sketches our homestead as we discuss ideas for producing more home-grown foods.
~

A Countryside Thanksgiving


This holiday, we decided to have a countryside thanksgiving, attempting to eat as organic/home-grown/local as we can. So I went onto LocalHarvest to find nearby farms to support. It was a pleasant surprise to have an opportunity to tour a couple farms and meet our neighbors! In the end, we ended up purchasing some organic produce, and pasture raised fresh ham & sausage.
~Acorn squash filled with Apple Pecan stuffing--delicious!
~

In the background, soft music plays as we all cook and prepare the baked goods together...
~Outside under the shade of an old tree, we began to fill our picnic table with the various dishes-- and after spending all morning in the kitchen...we were ready to EAT! hehe
~ Menu (From far right to left)
*Fresh Ham w/ a sweet apple glaze, *Old fashioned creamed corn
*Homemade cranberry sauce w/ fresh apples and pears

*Macaroni and cheese
*Sweet potato and Apple casserole
*Fresh collard greens, *Acorn Squash with Apple Pecan stuffing, *Buttermilk biscuits, *Cornbread dressing,
*Apple cider, *
Homemade Apple Pie w/ Vanilla Ice-cream
~~My parents taking a walk together after dinner~

After enjoying a wonderful meal & dessert, my brother declared it was "The BEST thanksgiving ever." That was so rewarding to hear, and I'm thankful that we were able to have the celebration we wanted--simple, with foods that are seasonal & local to our area...And the time spent together was memorable, indeed.
~

My brother gathered up acorns from up under the oak tree, to make Acorn flour he had read about in one of his survival books :)


~After rinsing, boiling and drying the acorns, he ground them up into a coarse meal..not quite flour..but close! He added it into a pancake recipe, and we were surprised at how "earthy" it tasted! heh. I believe its called survival food for a reason...
~ My sister was recently inspired to crochet new projects...
~


And I'm inspired to dig new areas for the onions!


Yesterday I dug four garden beds that are 4 ft x 12 ft each...only a few more to go. The ground is extremely soft because of all the rain lately, but the days are chilly and overcast.
~


We bought Georgia sweet onions from a farmer, for only $5 per bundle...We ended up buying 9 bundles...Gracious, that's 700 onions! Almost done planting though..I look forward to giving away many of the onions next year. It's so important to share with others the fruits of the harvest. Food is just too expensive these days-- we need to help each other out! ;)




~Mia

69 comments:

Krafty Girl said...

I would LOVE to come live near you! It is cold here in Northern Ontario! Beautiful pics and garden. What a treasure. Enjoy.

Beth

Suzanne said...

What a lovely Thanksgiving feast! A friend prefers ham too than the traditional turkey. We always do a turkey in our tin kitchen in the open hearth--as Tasha Tudor did, simply delicious:-)

My, all those nuts! Living in New England we get walnuts and chestnuts, no pecans, sadly.

Blessings,

Suzanne

Sweet Old Vintage said...

I so loved reading your post and it gets my frame of mind back to where it should be with all the commercials and out of control events that surround us... sometimes during the holiday season even at my age I have to give daily attitude adjustments and get to remembering whatbthe season is celebrated for.... you seem to realize you have all the necessary blessings and that in itself is a true gift... You made my day seem brighter also. Thank you.

AuntLou said...

I know it's a lot of work putting together a post like this. I want to thank you for the blessing that reading your work gives me. :)

happy momma said...

Just lovely! My youngest son is the official pecan cracker in our family, he loves to go out on the porch and work away. He comes in with a bowl full and grins from ear to ear. The other nuts are too hard for him to crack out so the pecans are all his. Your photos of your Thansgiving sure made me hungry. Yum God Bless

MWB said...

I always enjoy your food pictures! A question - what do you plan to do with your quilt after mending? Will you use it as a bedspread, or hang it up somewhere?

Kate said...

Another lovely post! I would love for you to post how you care for yourself or a family member who has a cold.

Bella Michelle said...

So happy that you had a wonderful Thanksgiving! I hope your Christmas season of celebration is just as wonderful.

Shelley said...

Your Thanksgiving dinner looks yummy which I am sure it was.....and how special you all made it having your meal under the open heavens above...God must of surly been smiling down upon your sweet family...thanks for sharing such a lengthy and very lovely post today...As you began to decorate your charming little cottage for Christmas...Please,do share with us...I know whatever it is...it will be wonderful...blessings to you and the family dear Mia.

The Weekend Homesteader said...

Beautiful pictures and post!

Jeanette said...

Your posts are always beautiful and serene!

Amanda said...

We grew some peanuts one year and they made the BEST boiled peanuts ;- ) BEST southern treat out there!

My Dad lives in Georgia and has a large pecan tree in his yard. He always brings us some at Christmas time and they are such a blessing.

A very bright brother you have making *survival food* from the acorns. I'd like to try that one myself with all of the acorns we have.

We have so much manure from our 1Jersey cow that it gets a bit overwhelming at times, I think I need to sell some of it as well. I would also be willin' to let anyone who wants it to come and haul it away ;- )

AnnaBelle (our jersey) is worth all of the trouble though. She is due somewhere between the end of Febuary til' April (not sure if the AI took on her or if she caught when she was at another farm with her friend ;- ) Either way, all of that fresh milk will more than make up for the work ;- )

Sorry for the long comment. Have a blessed day in Sweet JESUS!

Amanda
Matthew 6:33

shirley said...

So lovely...thank you for cheering my day

shirley said...

I tutor Korean children and one of their moms told me that when her mother was young the Korean women used acorn flour, the country was in war and there was little to eat. The way your brother made the flour is exactly the same way they explained the process to me.
Interesting.

Heather's Blog-o-rama said...

HI Mia,

Too bad I don't live closer, because I'd happily take some of those pecans and onions off your hands :) :) Those are favorites in my house ;) :)

Your photos are really lovely...and my personal favorite was the one of your parents taking a walk together. Lovely...:) :)

Your vintage finds are awesome. I found a couple of vintage-style bowls at The Goodwill for $0.50 each ANd a vintage looking bread tin with lid...very cute :) :)

Have a lovely weekend :) Love and hugs from the ocean shores of California (formerly Oregon), Heather :)

Amy Jo said...

Mia,

What a beautiful post! We spent our Thanksgiving in Americus and Plains GA. The weather was beautiful. All of my family originally comes from GA. Not many members left. Your Thanksgiving looked inspired and your clothes are always so pretty. Blessings,
Amy Jo

Ann at eightacresofeden said...

So many rewards for all your hard work in the garden Mia and so much to look forward to. I am considering planting some pecan trees as they do grow well here. We have planted macadamias which are my favourite nut and I can't wait for them to reach maturity!
You quilt was a lovely find. I have just returned from some garage sales today and I was blessed to find a brand new food mixer still in its box for $10. I would love a KitchenAid but they are very expensive here. This one will do me nicely for now. I will have to try it out and make a cake for afternoon tea.
I also love walking around streets admiring the older homes and pretty cottage gardens some owners have planted - it is a very good means of seeing what plants will grow well in your own locality.
I so enjoyed my visit to your home today - thank you for sharing little glimpses into your blessed life.

Donna said...

Oh, Pecans!

CNK said...

Looks like a wonderful time! :D Speaking of 1940's aprons, I just finished a few from this wonderful pattern :) It's called 1941 apron, if you're interested :) http://www.prayercoverings.com/catalog.php?category=7

The vintage dress with roses on it is beautiful!! :D does it have a wrap bodice?
God Bless :)
-Nicole

Lisa M. said...

Hugs Mia! :) ....and "Hello!" to all. Wondered what Y'all did for Thanksgiving. Thank you for sharing :) This year, I hosted ALL of my children, a daughter-in-law (who's expecting in June!!!!!), a girlfriend, and some of our best friends! Don and I commented to eachother how blessed we are!! Goatie is about to kid any moment, so that will be fun. It's nice to be home after being gone much of last year....I'm hoping to trim the grapes back even further this winter, and get a better start on the spring garden....LORD willing ;)

wendyytb said...

Hello Mia!

I am always thrilled to read your posts. How wonderful that you can produce so much of your own food! I am envious... My garden is sleeping under 3 inches of snow. I can hardly wait for spring to come again!

Rosie said...

Hello Mia,
So nice to have yet another lovely post from you, and enjoy your beautiful photos.
It sounds as though you had a wonderful Thanksgiving :)
It is funny seeing your warm (to us!) weather~we got snow today, here in Wesleytown!

Hello to each one of you there :)
Warmly, your friend, Rosie

Jennifer said...

Thank you, Mia, for your post. Your photos are amazing. You have a real gift for communicating atmosphere and feelings through photographs. I love the one of the smoke in the sun rays. Also the one of your parents taking a walk together. :-)
I adore the vintage dress you're wearing, and you look lovely in it. What a great find!
Your Thanksgiving meal and family time outside looked very appealing. Could you sometime share your recipe for cooking collard greens? I love turnip greens, and I am sure collard greens are similar, but have never cooked those.
Thank you so much for taking the time to share. It really is very appreciated! Always makes my day when I read your blog. :-)
Blessings,
Jennifer

Far Above Rubies said...

Beautiful; as always, Mia. Have a blessed day.

My favorite picture was of your parents taking a walk.

Cyndi Lewis said...

I've been homemaking for 18 years and you always have something to teach me and inspire me with. Thank you!

Doris High said...

I love visiting your site. I have you subscribed on my Google Reader, so usually see each new entry.Your photos are beautiful. Blessings upon blessings,
Doris

Marqueta (Mar-keet-a) said...

Dear Mia,

A happy belated Thanksgiving to you and your family. I love the photos, and seeing what you're up to. You even managed to make manure-pitching look romantic! ;)

We're enjoying rainy, cloudy weather here in Missouri. Perfect for getting on all those last-minute Christmas projects.

Blessings to you,

Marqueta

Bonnie said...

A lovely post as always! I LOVE that picture of your parents walking, it is just beautiful!
And I laugh and agree with Marqueta- you do make manure-pitching look romantic : )

~3iNnA~ said...

Thank you for the glimpse of your Thanksgiving. I love looking at other people culture.

blackheartbetty said...

Lovely photos! I enjoyed this post very much!

Mrs.Rabe said...

Lovely post, Mia...

Deanna

Dragonfly On My Finger said...

The Thanksgiving dinner looks so yummy =p I can't wait to see your sister's finished project - your parents have done such a wonderful job with helping you and your siblings flourish in your chosen interests - blessing to all and I will be waiting anxiously for your next post

Anonymous said...

There's so much warmth in your photos! It's so relaxing to read your posts. Thank you for sharing.

Anonymous said...

How lovely. Your posts are always such an inspiration! That is an exquisite shawl you found and I can't wait to see the repaired quilt, what a find! It was beautiful to see all the photos, you are so very gifted.

Brittany P.
Georgia USA

Lydia said...

Dear young lady, it has been far too long since I have visited your site. Thank you so much for all your inspiration! Is there any chance you might provide recipes for your menu mentioned above?? That sounded so scrumptious and creative. Where do you get all your ideas??
God Bless you!

AJ said...

"I believe that a home is a lovely reflection of what inspires you." ~ I couldn't agree more! I simply love my lil' patch of earth. :)

Oh, that's some good second-hand treasure finds.

Wow ~ that's alot of pecans! With the drought this year in Texas, our pecan trees didn't produce as much.

How fun to eat outside on Thanksgiving. :)

Your photography is beautiful...lovely light.

janice15 said...

I so would love to be in your place. I live in busy San Francisco..the closes farm is probably few hours away...I sometimes dream of a small farm with a small garden available. Nice post as always Mia...thank you for sharing you wonderful life...hugs Janice...

Anonymous said...

Thank you Mia for taking the time to put together this lovely post. It's always a pleasure to stop by your blog!

Brenda

Anonymous said...

Will you be using that quilt for your bed or will it be hung up for display?

Are you making your Christmas presents for family and friends?

Do you all ever give fresh produce to your local food bank or church?

Really enjoy your blog - very pretty and inspiring.

Kennesa said...

Darling Mia,

Another wonderful post! I love the vintage clothes you and your mother and sister wear.
Looking forward to your next one!

Your Sis in Christ
Kennesa

Laurie said...

you simply INSPIRE me!!!! I love the way you dress,live,and everything it is SO BEAUTIFUL!!!

Ashleigh said...

Dear Mia,
Your family's Thanksgiving feast looks so delicious! Thank you for the beautiful pictures and calming, encouraging words...your blog is a such a blessing to me! :)
May God bless you today with abundant joy and peace...

Ashleigh from Virginia

Cathyjo said...

Mia,as alway alovely post.So worth waiting for,you never let us down.I'm always cheacking to see if you've posted yet. I so enjoy each one. I'm ooking forwords to your Christmas and New Year post.
And I would like to wish you and yours a verry Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. My God Bless and Keep You All. ((Hugs))

Ngo Family Farm said...

What a beautiful, peaceful, thoughtful journey you're on. Thank you for taking the time to share that beauty!

Blessings to you,
Jaime

Rose @---} said...

I would love to know the mindset behind your family choosing to homestead... was it a religious, economical, or health reason? was it your dad's decision or did your mom desire this too? Does any of it lie in your african roots? I just wonder because you live so different than the life I've been raised to live but I'm trying to get away from that mindset. btw, I hope you don't feel offended by my questions, I'm also af. amer. or black or whatever phrase people like to use. and thank you for always being open to questions!

Veiled Glory said...

Would you be willing to sell me a couple pounds of unshelled pecans? I can pay whatever the local going rate would be for them, plus shipping.

You can contact me:

acory78 -at- gmail - dot- com

Anna

Enid said...

What a lovely blog, so glad I found you!

Stephanie said...

Everything looks so beautiful, I just want to jump in the photos! Thank you so much for the time you spend on these posts, they are always so lovely!

I would be so pleased if you would visit my new blog at http://hopefulforhomemaking.blogspot.com/

Lesley Austin said...

Dear Mia,
I discovered your blog only yesterday, but have been enjoying reading about your family's life together on the land and taking in the beauty of your photographs and those of the women in the sidebar. I is all very moving.

And I thought of you last night as I was reading Becky's Christmas by Tasha Tudor...have you read it? I get the same feeling from it (and old favorite that I check out of our library at this time of year) as I do from your posts...glimpses of a family living a loving, creative life at home.

With gratitude,

Lesley

faith hope love ღ said...

nice post! thanks for sharing... blessings...soraya

Owner of Homeschool Faith and Family Life Website said...

An idea for your brother:

We enjoy making homemade Reesies' Cups too...but we add a bit of Confectioner's sugar to our peanut butter and it then takes on more of the texture that the candy from the store has! Just thought he might like to experiment with that a bit!

Thank you for another wonderful visit to your beautiful home. I'm so grateful that technology allows us to have a glimpse of your cottage life and read your inspiring, uplifting thoughts.

God bless your whole family:)

Tina said...

I really like the name of your blog I am a homemaker myself. :)

Hijabi Homemaker said...

I have been stalking your blog since forever. Love the photography. Absolutely beautiful!


hijabihomemaker.blogspot.com

Donna said...

Merry Christmas
Many Blessings, for you and those you love!

Mrs. June Fuentes said...

Hello Mia,

I have an important question to ask you, please email me at wisewomanads@gmail.com. Thanks so much!

Many blessings and Happy New Year...

Maellen said...

I love it as usual! Wonderful and inspiring post! God bless you this new year!!

Bria Crawford said...

What amazing photography Mia!!!

bonnie M said...

I just found this blog and find it to be beautiful and refreshing. Thank you.

Amber Dee said...

SO sad that I found your lovely blog a month or so ago and there haven't been any posts since. :(

I hope everything is well with you and that you have another post coming to us soon!

Blessings!

Mia said...

Dear friends,

I thank you all for your encouraging notes and comments, as I cherish each one. It has indeed been awhile since my last update, but thank you for continuing to stop by. There are alot of projects in the works, and I need to sit down and update soon!
So prayerfully I'll be posting asap..

Love,
Mia

McMama said...

Mia,
I wanted to let you know that I have enjoyed your blog for a few years now. It is really a blessing to see the world through your eyes.

I also wanted to let you know that I have included your blog address in my blog roll on my blog. You can see it here: http://rescuedbygrace1.blogspot.com/

In His Love,
Lori

cowpattiescarhartsandcremebrulee.com said...

Oh, Mia, my heart LONGS for simplicity. I know the Lord has divinely placed us in His perfect will, but the place He has us ministering is a place completely saturated in the world. Sometimes I feel as if, just when I have gotten to a wonderful, humble, submissive state of mind, something triggers, and the smallest signs of recalcitrance starts creeping up. I envy your little quiet corner of the world! Much love, dear!

XO Laura Lee

shellakers said...

I just wanted to tell you that I'm SO blessed to have stumbled over your absolutely BEAUTIFUL blog! I don't know when I've seen such a dreamy blog! I just want to jump into your pages and live this life. Thanks for sharing with us and I'm looking so forward to seeing more from you!

Jills Home Remedies said...

I love, love your blog! I look forward to reading more! God's blessings to you.

~Jill

Anonymous said...

Mia when those onions start coming in besure and chops some up, putting them into snack plastic bags and then putting the snack bags into a gallon freezing bag. You can put from i/2 cup to one cup in each snack back. When you are ready to cook, just pull out what you need.
Barbara

Anonymous said...

I love your skirt! Is that a pattern, or a vintage find?

paramedic said...

This is a quite delightful post! How magnificent and straightforward existence is on an estate... much thanks to you for offering each one of those sweet pictures..

Anonymous said...

Beautiful blog... beautiful life... I am inspired and wistful.

JEMAS said...

your blog is blissful, a simply lovely lifestyle.