Monday, June 25, 2012

Preserving the Harvest

For the past week, I've been kept busy in the kitchen canning our fresh fruit!
A homemade quick bread is easily made for the occasion, so that we can sample our fresh Blueberry/Strawberry jam. This goes quite well with afternoon tea.
Fruit and veggie scraps are often brought out to the Chickens. The younger chickens should begin laying soon!
Homemade Relish
3.5 lbs of cucumbers, 2 cups green peppers, 3.5 cups sweet onions...
1 red bell pepper, 2.5 cups diced carrots..
Everything minced fine, and combined in a large bowl. Feel free to keep the cucumber skin on.
I wont mention it took me 5 hrs to chop all this by hand...nope, won't mention it! hehe
Now for the spices!!
2 TBsp pickling spice, 2 tsp each of: celery seed, dill weed, & dry mustard powder.
1 tsp turmeric and 1/2 tsp garlic powder.
In a large stock pot, combine minced veggies, spices, 4 cups sugar & 3 cups apple cider vinegar. Bring to a boil, and simmer until carrots are soft.
Ladle into jars, & process for 15 mins. Makes 6-7 pints.
The relish turned out excellent and very flavorful! I hope you'll try this recipe :)
One morning we all traveled to our nearby small town to shop at the open-air market. Our friends sell organic veggies that they'd hand-picked that same morning.
We're going to start shopping here for any surplus food we may need--I so enjoy supporting our local growers!
In the garden, it's not uncommon to see a roll of twine atop one of the wooden stakes, with a worn pair of garden scissors hanging nearby. This has been so helpful & convenient as we often tie up heavy tomato vines.
In the early evening, while the Summer sun was beginning to set--we headed over to our neighbors homestead. With a pasture of over 50 acres, it's a beautiful sight.
We called in the herd of goats (which numbered over forty) and it's so much fun to watch them approach the gate. The horses and cattle follow soon after.
To help out our neighbor, my dad offered to build a new structure for the chickens, and it's coming along very well. My brother often works alongside my dad with this project.
While they worked on the chicken house, my sister and I walked through the pasture with our shovels and wagon in tow. We gathered up manure for the garden, which will be a huge help for our soil!
Often our meals are eaten out-of-doors, as we gather around the picnic table decorated by fresh picked flowers.
I find that preserving the harvest helps you to appreciate all the hard work that goes into every jar--and that feeling of accomplishment has been a blessing.


Country Mouse said...

Lovely as always, Mia. I think you have it exactly right about how preserving the harvest puts a person really in touch with the effort it takes and what it all means in the end. It's so easy to lose that when "food" comes in a can from a store!

donna said...

I have been canning as well; wild black raspberry jelly and plum jam so far. It is so satisfying to put up food you worked hard to grow. God is so good in providing for guise children. As always I so enjoyed your post.

donna said...

*his children. (I hate auto correct) :-)

Julianne said...

Thank you for posting again so soon.
Many inspiring thoughts!

Anonymous said...

What beautiful pictures. I guess it helps living on a beautiful farm. Thanks again for sharing, and this wait didn't seem so long. :)

Becky said...

You're so right about being better able to appreciate it when you put all the effort into growing, and or preserving it. It makes you much more careful that things don't go to waste.

ladyhawthorne said...

Can you post a recipe for your quick bread?
I'm going to try your relish recipe too!

An At Home Daughter said...

Hi Mia,
As always a very sweet post. Your relish looks really yummy. I might just have to try that recipe this summer. Maybe I will have to get that Universal Food Chopper I have been wanting: ) It looks like there will be a lot of chopping ahead.


Dieneke said...

Always glad if you have a new post.
I love everything you share!
Blessings, Dieneke

Amy Jo said...

Hi Mia,

Such a lovely post! I am glad you shared the twine idea, that is such a great way to have it handy. I have never seen anyone else do that.

Amy Jo

Anonymous said...

I've been canning quite a bit lately, too! This weekend I tried my hand at homemade pickles using the cucumbers from our small garden. They turned out delicious!

Plum said...

Your blog ranks among my absolute favorite to read! It always has such a calming and inspiring effect on me. Such a wonderful job!

Anonymous said...

What a bountiful harvest from your land. Enjoy all your delcious and healthful foods.


Mrs. Arpino said...

Hi Mia,
I think it was lost in cyberspace but I tried to tell you earlier that I thought of you this past weekend. My family happened upon an 1812 reenactment and I looked for you among the participants. the gowns were so beautiful and in the evening there was a ball. We didn't go to that though because my little girl needed to get to bed! I regret not going though. Have a wonder filled summer!

The Working Home Keeper said...

I love canning! I've been busy putting up blackberry, blueberry and strawberry jams lately.

Mary Ellen
The Working Home Keeper

Lady M. said...

The relish looks really good! I like the picture of your sister feeding the chickens. :)

Suzanne said...

Here in New England it is almost time for blueberries. I put up my blueberry/maple preserves each year. I first got the recipe from a woman in Maine where they have the petite blues--a better flavor, but they don't grown in MA. Your relish sounds delicious!

Rosie said...

Hi Mia,
What a nice suprise to come by adn find not one, but *two* posts for you!

It looks as though you guys are enjoying the summer.
Your garden looks wonderful! Our is just at the beginning here, it is nice to see what we have to look forward too :)

Oh, and tell your sis the dress is lovely!

Hello to everyone there, from everyone here :)


plaingrl said...

can u please post the recipes for strawberry and other fruit jam? and also step-by-step instructions on how to can? i have never canned before but would like to try! do u ever make salsa and/or veggie juice?

Bella said...

Mia! It's lovely to read another one of your beautiful posts. :D You make it sound so relaxing and wonderful. I think I'll try canning! :D
Remember, if you ever happen to be in Newnan, swing by for a visit!

The Lady Beale said...

I love the way you present your simple yet exquisite life. Your blog has helped me to simplify my life and enjoy the simple gifts that God gives me everyday. Thank you so much for this post.


elizabeyta said...

Thank you so much for sharing. I need the calmness of this post today.



Vintage Rose said...

Hi Mia,

Your blog is just lovely and your photo's are glorious.

How I long for the warmth of summer and eating outdoors again.

God bless you and your beautiful family.


Mrs. V. said...

Hello Mia ~ I would love the sweet bread recipe as well. :0) You always share such lovely pictures with your posts. You make your blog such a respite and lovely place to spend some time. Thank you for the time you put into it!

Joy Tilton said...

Summer is zipping by, isn't it? My favorite time of year but it's almost too busy to enjoy. Mom always made chow-chow out of the abundance of the garden each year, too much comes all at once and even with sharing there MORE than enough! Good neighbors are a big blessing, helping each other out. I need to find a source for some manure to add to our whole yard, the soil here is poor at best. Lovely pictures, relaxing music and inspiration... always when I come for a visit!

Elli Chase Designs said...

Your canning recipe looks neat I think I might try it! We have got so many tomatoes in our garden and were wanting to can them. But we don't know how. Do you think you can do a post on canning?
By the way your blog is so cool!!

Bonnets and Boots said...

Your blog is so inspiring and uplifting. I always come away feeling peaceful and very blessed.

Jody and Stan said...

Wonderful Blog. New Follower!


janice15 said...

I would love to make some relish, but canning makes me nerves..I don't know why...but yours look so wonderful...Mia your pictures are lovely...I wish you would post a recipe for that quick bread would love to try it..I have been having trouble in the garden with white flies and these little brown red bugs...they have attacked my tomato plant that was really beautiful..but I read to use soapy water and clean them off...thank you for sharing a post so soon. It's always a pleasure...with love Janice God bless...

Rena said...

Thank you Mia. I'm just back from an overseas trip and needed your blog to settle me back into my quieter place. You are doing such a good work here. Stay encouraged!

Donna said...

Perhaps check into a knife that chops the veggies, having the right knife ( tool) for the job will be easier, and safer.

Freezing Blueberries today here. Thank you for you peaceful blog!

annie said...

I sincerely enjoy all your postsand just love the peacefulness of them.

The Goulet Family Copyright © 2012 María L.A. Goulet Please request my permission for use. said...

I love the skirt you are wearing in the picture of you feeding the chickens. Where did you get it? I like you have chosen to stay at home after graduating from homeschool. I love to dress in skirts and dresses always. But not dowdy, in bright colors and flowing styles, like you. I would love to share our family's blog with you: We are farming on just one-third of an acre and having a lot of fun. It started as a science experiment. Two goats, ten chickens, four cats, two dogs, and several gardens later we're still at it :)I look forward to hearing from you,

Jennifer said...

Thanks for your post. The photos are lovely, as usual! The relish looked delicious. I will have to give it a try. Well, ...not so sure about that five hours of chopping!
:-) Hugs to you!

Anonymous said...

Popping in from over at "Goose Hill Farm".

How deliciously lovely!

Truly a beautiful blog you have.


Rhonda Devine said...

I always enjoy visiting your blog, Mia. Thanks for sharing your farm life with us:)



Lyric said...

We arrived at Hip Hillbilly Farm in November. Truly a blessing and good hard work. Hubby says we have accomplished a lot in these eight months. We have yet to get a well and I will never take water for granted again. My first attempts at a garden failed I learned due to too little water. I was so used to putting something in the ground in the North and it growing. It's very dry here during winter time.

I look forward to canning and sharing the experience on our farm blog. Your exploits give hope and smiles to our face. (I have shown your blog to DH who loves how you are living). We are in your shadow working hard and fast to catch up.



Rose @---} said...

do you ever get tired of making things from scratch? do you make all your food this way? I've been doing it for medical reasons and I'm quite sick of it - it's hard work, tiring (5 hrs of chopping?) and I seem to run low on easy ideas. Besides that, I get tired of super simple meals and want to do something a bit complicated but I can't find the time! soaking, jarring, boiling things all takes so much. do you have any suggestions?

Marisol - my pen name said...

Your blog is a such blessing to my older sister,who is an aspiring homemaker also,Thank you for your blog,God bless you richly!!!!

Nina said...

Your relish recipe looks delicious. I'm curious though, is there no salt in it? Most of the relish recipes I've read or tried have been pickle based, using pickling salt. I'd like to try this recipe, but just wanted to check that this really is a salt free relish recipe.

Anonymous said...

Your pictures are absolutely beautiful - I would want to preserve as much as I could if I lived in your home, too! Thanks for an inspiring blog - Emma.

Trish said...

Hello Mia,

I discovered your blog last week and I have read every post on your blog. Your pictures are beautiful and your writing is soothing and inspiring.

I have been inspired to pick up the bible again because of your blog. I have always dreamed of being a homesteader and even though I am 46 now, I still hope to achieve this dream at some point in my life...maybe when I retire from my library job :)

I will definitely try some of your recipes.

My only child, passed away unexpectedly July 25, 2011. (just over a year) She was 20. I have had a hard time with faith lately and I admire yours so much. I hope to have faith as strong as yours and your family, again.

I hope God continues to bless you and your family.


Anonymous said...

What a wonderful blog. I just discovered you. How inspiring. Thank you.

AVETMISS Compliant said...

Wow. I'm amaze of your creative streak. Don't you get tired of making delicious foods? lol

PinkPeonies said...

I love your posts. They are absolutely inspiring!

Anonymous said...

Mia I have just discovered your blog and I think it's glorious. I love the gentle writing, the beautiful photographs and inspirational music. I am looking forward to following your activities.

Anonymous said...

I have just found your blog. What a delight!

Thank you for the inspirational posts!

What a blessing!
God Bless!

Anonymous said...

This post is a prime example of why you are such an inspiration. Every time I read your blog I walk away wanting to do more and feeling like a slacker! Because of this, I've picked you for the Very Inspiring Blog Award. You can pick it up and read the guidelines here:

Thank you for creating such a beautiful blog!

Anonymous said...

New post soon?

Daughter of God by grace. said...

Hope you are well!!!!! God Bless you!!!!!

Anonymous said...

I just saw the article that mentions your blog in Deep Roots At Home ~ Congrats!!!

Sis Cindy Brannon

AJ said...

Hope all is well with you and your family. Looking forward to your next post.

Anonymous said...

Please hurry back. we miss you very much. Praying all is well with you and your loved ones.

Sandy Lewis said...

You are in my prayers. I am sure this has been a busy Summer. We would sure love to hear from you and know that you and your family are well.

~Sarah~ said...

I just stumbled upon your blog a few weeks ago, and I wanted to let you know how encouraged and inspired I have been by the beautiful aspects of your daily life that you post here! It is so encouraging to know there are other young women who desire to be home makers, and glorify the King of Kings in all that they do! Thank you so much for sharing this blog, it is an added bit of sunshine in my life!

Karen said...

Beautiful photos and what a wonderful life! Keep on being inspired by God's beautiful creations and please continue to inspire us!
Peace and Blessings

Miriam said...

Missing a new post...

I really do hope everything is well with you and your loved ones!

Have a blessed fall!

jem said...

I just am so blessed by your blog.

The simplicity. The beauty.

The photos. The modest dress, God bless you VERY MUCH!

Mia said...

My Dear Readers,

I want to thank you all for your sweet comments and encouragement! All has been well here at the cottage, and I look forward to posting updates soon {working on it now :-) }


verymerry7 said...

Dear Mia,
My daughters and I recently came across your blog. We are so happy to find a sister practicing the beautiful art of homekeeping. Your posts are inspiring and we are looking forward to sharing in your days again soon.

verymerryseven said...

so sorry. I posted the incorrect blog. correct one follows.

Amy (aka The Library Lady and Modernish Homemaker) said...

Thanks so much for representing minorities in the Christian homemaking blog world! I am Hispanic myself and it is so nice to see a woman of color who shares my values. I am really enjoying your blog and wish you the best as you continue!

lyka yap said...

I love your photos! Nice blog too. Thanks! I really enjoyed your blog. God bless you.

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The Blogless Sister said...

Hi Mia,
It's always a good day when a new blog post pops up in my blogreader! Hope you're enjoying autumns!

Anonymous said...

Love your posts, Mia!! Excited for the next one :)


mia james said...

I can see that you've been busy this week. That's a lot of food you've cook. I think you can feed a hundred persons with that. lol
seo southampton

Jennifer said...

I miss you, Mia!

Linda said...

Missing your posts sweet Mia :) Although I can't talk, I havn't done a post since about gets busy with family , church life and the garden. God bless you x

AgueroSandra said...

Hola me quede sin palabras al recorrer tu blog estoy maravillada con tu historia y me encanta tu hermoso trabajo el amor y la pasión que le pones a todo te felicito muy bello desde ya te sigo y seguiré disfrutando esta maravilla ni hablar de las fotografías te dejo mi cariño Sandra.

Ginny said...

Hope all is well with your family as it has been so long since your last post. I do enjoy your post, the recipes, the pictures. We had a wonderful summer here in Michigan and were able to share many meals with friends under out Maple tree. There were no misquitos this year, which made this all possible. God Bless you.

Chloe Schofield said...

Hello There,
I have just been searching through your website. I love them both! :D I have a feeling you may like my shop in return:
I hope you enjoying looking around.
Chloe xx

Anonymous said...

Mia, I hope all is well with you and your family. I can't help but wonder if something is wrong.... Take care

Anonymous said...

I hope you and your family are doing well. It kind of worries me when there has not been a post since June. All your posts are so treasured and inspiring. Take care.

The Hughes Family said...

Blessings to you. My daughter ( she is also a stay at home daughter) and I LOVE your blog. We cherish all of your post. Just thought I would let you know that we pray for you and your family. We miss hearing from you! Hope all is well. May the Lord bless you! Our family blog is If you ever find the time to check it out.

Julianne said...

It's been 4 months! Will we ever hear from you again?
We miss you!

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Julian said...

missing you! Hope alls well. Praying you are ok,as well as your family. You are very much missed!

Laura Lynn said...

I miss the glimpses
into a life

{{* *}}

Anonymous said...

Dearly miss your beautiful posts! Hope all is well <3


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