We’re finally able to get out into the wet wet fields to pick some pumpkins! We had hoped to offer “pick your own” but we’re afraid everyone is going to get stuck in the mud while picking their pumpkins! So for now, we’re picking and putting them at the bottom of our driveway at the self serve stand.
Most of our pumpkins were grown from seed at our house from Baker Creek Heirloom seeds. They are all considered delicious eating/baking, even the wee ones!
Visit our driveway stand at 1988 County Road YY • Baldwin
Little pumpkins are 3 for $1. Large pumpkins are $3 each. Special “bulk pricing” for friends with large families 🙂 (ie – if you have more than 4 kiddos, we’ll make you a deal so you can carve pumpkins with your kids and still afford to buy groceries for the week!)
We have 4 varieties of pumpkins:
Slate, blue-grey, 6- to 10-lb pumpkins of superb quality. Their shape is flat, ribbed, and very decorative; also a good keeper. Popular in Australia, an excellent variety. One of the more tasty varieties for a variety of savory dishes and is excellent for a year-round supply of squash, as these will often keep well over 12 months!
Jack Be Little Squash
This tiny, cute pumpkin weighs just 8 ounces; flat and ribbed. These are highly popular and a top-selling fall crop. The flesh is good to eat, and the skin is bright orange. This type of squash may have been developed in the Orient, as pumpkins of this type are offered to the ‘Spirits’ by many in Thailand, where they come in 4 or 5 colors.
Conneticut Field Pumpkin
The heirloom pumpkin of the New England settlers and Indians, several hundred years old. Golden fruit weigh about 20 lbs each. This is a truly old variety; can be used for pies; the traditional American pumpkin.
Last Year’s Aldi Pumpkin
Of course I have no idea what kind of pumpkin we bought last year but we got it at Aldi and saved some of the seeds, and they came up just fine this year!
Our daughter has developed a knack for taking pictures around our place so I decided to make a page just for her photos. I told her I’d like to upload some to shutterfly to have them printed out for her to sell when we have a little shop on the property someday… the look on her face when I said that was priceless…
Here’s a little sampling, and a link to the new page here.
This year we decided to try planting a pumpkin patch for pick your own pumpkins this fall, along with a zinnia patch, sunflower patch and sweet corn. We also planted a large number of heirloom tomatoes, cucumbers, herbs and perennials from seed that we hope to be able to sell later in the summer as well.
Dan invested in a few more tractor/farm implements, including a planter and a plow, and has prepared and planted the 5+ acres we had previously leased to a local farmer… we now have fields of timothy, clover, and switchgrass for cover crops/habitat, and we’re adding our garden fields of pumpkins, sunflowers, and raspberries. Its finally dry enough in the fields to be able to get out and do some planting! We’re hoping for a long fall to make the growing season long enough to make all farmers’ plantings worthwhile this year…
Here are some pictures from the homestead over the past couple of weeks (including today!). Many of the photos are courtesy of our daughter Eva.
grasses in the field
sunlight and field
zach and miriam in dad’s clover field
nibbling on clover
eva hanging out in the dirt
dan roto tiling the pumpkin row
team work getting the seeds planted
miriam putting in the seed
pumpkin seed – grow!
dad and zach getting the technique down
getting rocks out of field
checking out what is growing
raspberries – wild
snowy river the rooster
gretel who needs a hoof trim
heidi the goat
lane of grapes
dan’s planter coming home
our wild asparagus
wild asparagus – kids LOVE it
local second hand shop find – pottery bird feeder
jen harvesting nettle
basket of nettle
only half a jar to go
mr wolf “the bee guy” at his hives on our property
bee guy – putting up solar fence to keep the BEAR out
I got really attracted to these chalk painted mason jars I’ve seen around… Dan bought me a couple for my birthday a couple of years ago, and I really like how they look. We seem to have collected a large amount of canning jars recently so I thought this would be a perfect way to “declutter” … by making something out of them to give as gifts or sell as gifts.
Ideally, I would have had these ready for a little pre-Mother’s Day sale, but I wound up actually making 32 of them to use as table decorations for a conference I’m helping with, which is taking place the 2 days before Mother’s Day… I was happy to do it because it was fun and it was motivational to make a certain amount, by a certain time.
Here are some pics of my mason jar crafts which are adorning tables at Mystical Rose Gardens in Baldwin for a conference on Living in the Divine Will being held there this weekend. We plan to offer them for sale at the end of the conference, in case anyone needs a last minute Mother’s Day gift 🙂
Last year I ran across some really nice recipes for making lotion bars. Well, what I ran across first were some super cute lotion/soap bar molds that I fell in love with! So I ordered the molds, then decided to try making lotion bars. Someday I will try soap, but for now, I’m enjoying using beeswax from local honey bee keepers and experimenting with different combinations of essential oils.
I someday hope to have a little shop set up on our “homestead” where I can sell things like this and other crafts, but for now, I’m going to just spread the word and likely add these to my Etsy store.
If you are interested in purchasing one of these lotion bars and live locally, I’d be happy to prepare one for your wife, sister or mom for this upcoming Mother’s Day 🙂 I have them in the form of larger 4oz size flowers, which come with/on an antique (or antique-ish) saucer for $8 or in a smaller 2oz size in tin for $6.
Lotion bars are made with beeswax from local beekeeper, shea butter or mango butter, coconut oil and an essential oil. They have a very light fragrance – I have used a mixture of lavender and orange with some, and peppermint and orange for others. They work great for rubbing onto really dry spots on your skin, for travel, and for sitting next to your kitchen/bathroom sink or on a night stand… having it rest on the little saucer makes it handy to keep anywhere! And it looks cute! (if I do say so myself!)
Since the flowers are all in various designs and the saucers have been collected from second hand shops, there’s no guarantee that you will get exactly what you see online… please allow me to pick the right flower and saucer combo for you 🙂 Your purchase will come in a little bag with tissue paper and a tag, ready to give 🙂
Please fill out the contact form or send an email to jennifer at turningleafstudio.com if you would like to place an order 🙂 Thanks!
As yucky of a topic as this is, I thought this was a very good and informational article by Whole-Fed Homestead about ticks, how they work, and how to use natural products, and common sense, to help prevent being bitten by the little buggers… it is so hard to decide between using something chemical that has proven nasty side effects, but is effective, and some natural options which require more effort and applications, and may be less effective. Either way, there are pros and cons. Every year, we weigh it out and often use both methods. But I felt this article covered a lot about how ticks work, which helps me decide what to do to protect myself and my children. Good luck!!
Two teenage daughters of a good friend of mine have started a business for themselves, hand pouring soy candles. Their business is called Forestville Candle Company and they have an Etsy store that I would like to share here: ForestvilleCandles.
I’ve been a “regular” candle buyer from them since they started selling their candles before Christmas because I LOVE the glow of candles, and the fact that these candles do not emit toxins in the air.
Their scents are delicious! Some smell so good, I could eat them! (but not quite…). In the winter, I really liked their Balsam scent, and Peppermint. This spring, they have a huge selection and a variety of sizes to choose from… I have been burning Lemon in the house recently and it has helped my mood immensely on the more dreary spring days. My other current favorites are Cucumber Melon and Lily of the Valley…. none of their scents are overpowering, but they fill the house with a warm, comforting aroma. I just love them!
If you need yet one more reason to purchase non-toxic candles from an entrepreneurial pair of teens, part of their proceeds go toward Feed My Starving Children, an organization that is dedicated to providing nutritious meals to children worldwide. So not only do you get beautiful aroma and wonderful ambiance, you also help support a couple of good kids in their efforts to build their savings accounts, & you also help other children around the world… !
I don’t often buy into these “bundle” things, but this one seems to have some good stuff for me for Lent this year, and it’s being offered through a blog I’ve been following for many years now, Equipping Catholic Families. They have all kinds of nice Catholic crafts and projects for Catholic families. This Catholic Mom Bundle is $25 til March 1, and it has some really nice things that seem to match up with what I am feeling called to do for Lent this year, personally and with the kids. For instance, there are a couple of craft projects that I think will help me slow down and focus more on “quiet”, especially since I am planning to significantly reduce my amount of screen time, starting Ash Wednesday. There are some pretty printables and a Lenten journal for moms, as well as some Lent crafts for the kids. Check it out HERE.
Images and information credit: Equipping Catholic Families and Catholic Mom Bundle.
HOW TO INTERPRET THE MOTHER OF PERPETUAL HELP ICON.
Our Mother of Perpetual Help is a Byzantine icon that is believed to have its origin sometime during the 13th -15th century. The icon is known for being miraculous; over the centuries countless healings and special graces have been attributed to it, so much so that the image has been honored and venerated by many Popes. The miraculous icon is painted on wood and measures about 20″ in height (54 x 41.5 centimeters) and depicts the Virgin Mary, under the title “Mother of God,” holding the Child Jesus.
1: Greek Characters:
Largest and near the top of the icon, we see the Greek letters
ΜΡ θΥ = Mother of God; over the angel on the right is inscribed
O AP M = the Archangel Michael;
over the angel on the left is O AP I O = the Archangel…