Tuesday, November 27

*all natural body soaps surfaces a bit..

My momma is now an official soap maker! While momma was here visiting we made soap. A few years back I had a soap business with an online storefront, but when we got the news that we would be moving a few years ago, I halted my soap making. I used up my stock, gave it as gifts and sold it at clearance prices, well because I needed to clear it all out to make the move that much easier.    After a number of years passing and our personal stock almost being depleted, I made soap last year when my BFF was here for a visit.  Unfortunately after not having made soap for a while, I ended up putting in too much oatmeal in one of the recipes and too much pulverized walnut shells in the scrub bar (AKA SCRATCH bar), so this time around I did not put in any abrasive additives! A little more digging so I can find my tried and true recipes is in order before I include additives in my soaps again.

Making soap is not difficult, but is something that has to be done with much caution! Especially if you have children or pets in your home.  Soap can be made in your kitchen or workshop with some basic oils from your grocery store, but a superior soap can be made by buying some out of the ordinary oils from a soap supply store.  There are many great websites, forums out there to help you get started soap making if this is something you want to tackle.  Finding a good recipe and making sure the values are what you need for a quality bar is so important.

An unrefined soap, made from quality oils and lye is so much  better for your skin than the products you find on the grocers shelves.   If you are not adventurous and do not care to try your hand at soap making, but wish to use a better soap that will leave your skin clean and moisturized, I will be glad to make that available to you. 

We made some of our top sellers when our store was open a few years ago: Lavender, Lemongrass, Tea Tree/Clary Sage and Rosemary/Bay Laurel.  The scents wafting through our home is intoxicating. Seriously though, it smells awesome!  I only use natural coloring agents in our soaps, such as turmeric powder (that is the coloring in the loaf of soap on the right above), pulverized lavender blossoms and pulverized mint leaves to give a green coloring to the bar. 

Monday, November 26

*meet the survivors

We hope your Thanksgiving was absolutely wonderful, ours was. This year's Thanksgiving looked a lot different than last year for sure!  We had a much smaller gathering this holiday and I must say I did miss all the hum of the large group that was here a year ago, but simple was good this year. I would love it if we could have Thanksgiving here every year, all my sisters with their families and our parents, as well as some friends but that is just not realistic. We celebrated and gave thanks with Robert, Henry and my mom. It was nice to have Mom here cooking alongside her on this traditional feasting day!

Over the past 7 months or so we have been raising heritage breed turkeys for the holiday season.  We were blessed to sell three of our healthy free ranged heritage breed turkeys to families this Thanksgiving. We have kept a pair of each breed so we can continue to breed and provide good clean meat for our table and others.  I was delighted to get emails and text telling me how delicious and clean the meat of their turkeys were on T-day!  That my friends was so rewarding.  That is the reason we do what we do!    We have a few more available for the Christmas holiday as well.

This year we cooked half, yes HALF of our 40 lb turkey for or feast and we processed the other half as ground turkey meat for tasty dishes that will be cooked up in the coming months. Mom and I  were able to get 11 pounds of ground turkey packaged and into the freezer.   We have one other turkey (Spanish Black Heritage) that we butchered which is set aside for ground turkey as well.  This is one more food item I don't have to buy from the food industry and that makes me happy!

Is your mouth watering? I know mine is! These two pics of this beautifully smoked turkey is one that we raised!  One of our customers was kind enough to send us pics of this beaut that adorned their Thanksgiving table.


Wednesday, November 21

*thankful heart

I hope your counters look like this too! Happy Thanksgiving to each of you. I have some exciting news to share with you soon, it hardly seems almost a month ago that I last posted an entry. 

(disclaimer: the bottle of Wild Turkey is not JUST Wild Turkey, it is my Vanilla Extract..  We have always made our Vanilla Extract with Vodka in the past, but we heard that it was better with bourbon so, we changed it up when our last bottle that steeped in Vodka was used up.  We do like the Bourbon mixture better.)

May this year find you thankful for much.  It is so easy to get caught up in every day happenings and not recognize the little gifts that are strewn all along the way. May your heart be filled with gratitude for the smallest of things.  I think when we find our selves thankful, we find that we have enough, when our hearts are full of thanks there is little room for want.  Happy Thanksgiving to You and your family!