Saturday, February 27, 2010

A sappy story...

The maple sap is running in New England!....or so I have heard. We decided that we wanted to give it try, so I did what every "from away-er" does. I bought a book. Now I know everything there is to know, right? First on the list is to identify the sugar maple the fall. What? But, it is now late February and the sap runs, NOW! OOPS. Okay, plan B. Fortunately for our family, Number 1 has a few skills and comes through for us. He has pointed out what we are absolutely, almost fairly certain, sure to be six sugar maple trees.

Okay, now what? I bought a few taps. We decided to use some plastic water jugs (they were free) to collect the sap, this will really keep our costs down.

Number 1 is drilling in the maple tree, while Trink and E-Man look on.

Today was THE day to install the taps! After re-reading the book to make sure of how and where to put the taps, we realized that the tree diameter must be at least ten inches. Uh-oh, all the trees that Number 1 found are NOT that big. Well, he was able to find two other that were big enough.

So, with taps installed and jugs attached, all we have to do is wait! I can already taste that syrup!

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Hobos, Veggies, and Trink

My littlest daughter, Trink, has a heart for the ministry. Trink is six. She is our family's cheerleader and biggest snuggler and absolutely loves to laugh! All of this information is background for a couple of funny things I wanted to share. It is based on "Kids say the darnedest things!" theory.

Months ago, my older children began discussion on Hobos. Being homeschoolers, we dove right it to discover the origin of the term Hobo. We learned that there are many theories of the origin, also they had their own community, culture and even language! While studying, Trink realized that Hobos didn't have a home of their own. Of course the rest of the family took that point for granted, but it gave her a tremendous idea.

Our family had been in deep discussion over what our farm would be, what should we raise or sell or grow, etc. Trink KNEW that she had solved two problems with her marvelous idea. We should have a HOBO Farm! They could just set up tents in our fields and we would take care of them! Problem solved!

I mentioned that Trink loves to laugh. In our family, when we are tickling, it is called "getting out your go-guffles" which generally live and breed in one's armpits. The term was coined by my great-grandfather. Trink truly enjoys having her go-guffles removed. They must be removed regularly in order to prevent an over-abundance of them. During a recent "removal" Trink was evidently thinking of her future. She announced quite out-of-the-blue that "You know, Muma, when I get married......." What? When you get married, what??...I thought. "You will have to bring the vegetables!"

Vegetables???!! I'm confused. It turned out that she could not bear the thought that once she was married, I could no longer get out her go-guffles, and she just couldn't bring herself to tell me!

I didn't bother to hide my laugh!

Sunday, February 7, 2010

A Mission to Lima

Biscuit and I were able to accompany my parents on a mission trip to Lima, Peru at the end of January. It was a wonderful experience that will never be forgotten!

The House of Hope Ministries (HOH), based in Chesapeake, VA has, been feeding the kids in Peru and other parts of the world for over a decade. HOH does not just send the much needed money, but they take an active part in helping to build feeding centers or sometimes homes. Occasionally, HOH will bring a medical team and offer free clinics. They also offer spiritual guidance when asked and give support in anyway they can to the ministry that has already been established by the Peruvian People.

My parents have been traveling to Lima for about 10 years and so I have seen many pictures of the work being done there. I can easily see where Father has moved and the prosperity that has come through the faithfulness of HIS people. I did not need be there from the beginning to witness the changes.

Churches have sprung up as a natural progression of the feeding centers and on this particular trip, three of the churches were holding VBS. It works much like in the U.S. only in another language!! We were able to help out with the kids and also with feeding. Many of the kids will recieve their only meals from these centers!

Biscuit had the opportunity to teach her Lip Balm recipe at one of the centers. It is the hope that the teenagers will be able to make and sell Lip Balms for themselves. It was a fun experience for Biscuit and the teens seemed to enjoy it also!

As Biscuit is such a wonderful cook and is always looking for a new recipe or neat experience, she quickly grabben an opportunity that presented itself. She was allowed to help prepare the meal for the Vacation Bible School attendees. The kitchens are VERY different than she is used to!

I am greatful for the experience for myself, but it was special because I got to share it with my parents and daughter!