Pear tree lane farmhouse

~Pajama Cowboy~

Written by Sue, Friday, May 23, 2014,                         Showers, temps. 90's
Per our usual routine first thing in the morning, we have coffee and devotions sitting on our porch, so what was different about yesterday? I was the first out  and what did I see, a big pile of dung on the front lawn, actually there were four big piles that weren't there last evening.
 OOPS! Someone must have left the gate open last night. When Pajama Cowboy, saw the pile, he immediately jumped on his ATV with ever faithful, Lucy, following closely behind and off they went, round and round, chasing the horses. What did Sue do, grab her camera of course, we bloggers have a job too you know, our cameras always near by! Grin~

 Folks! this is what freedom looks like!!!


 Na Na Boo Boo catch me if you can!!!

 This went on for about twenty minutes. Finally Pajama Cowboy got off the ATV opened the gate, and walked them through.
You should have seen the look Rusty gave  PJ Cowboy, it was like he was saying, "That's what you get for leaving the gate open, just wait until next time, it won't be so easy!""HE! HEEEE"
 Now the sheep on the other hand were begging to leave their small pasture to get into the main pasture, go figure. It just goes to show that most creatures, animal and humans alike think "the grass is always greener on the other side!" ~smile~ There is never a dull moment on a farm when you have animals!

 Lots of thinks going on here at the farm, but first there is a wedding we must attend this weekend!! We are so happy for this young couple.
 Until next time.

Wishing you a most blessed,and safe Memorial Day weekend., as we remember those who gave, and continue to give  their all that we might enjoy the freedoms we have!
Sue
Personal note... To all of those who visited me at Vee's Note Card Party, I say "Thank you so much."

~Notecards for May~

Written by Sue, Tuesday, May 20, 2014                A beautiful day, sunny and warm 70's

I call this month's note cards....
~God's little Creatures, Designed and Created by Him~

~I am praying for you~

 ~If I can do it, so can you~


~Congratulations I knew you could do it.~


Hang on, things will soon change

~My note card box top~

I don't think I did this post justice, my only excuse is, I am so busy here at the farm, but I could not let the day go by without joining one of my favorite friend's party, and the  hostess with the mostess. Thank you Vee for hosting. I will be by this evening to visit all of the guests, as we are working on a major work project today. 
Blessings, 
Sue
Please join us at A Haven for Vee, and share photos that you think would make great notecards.

Would you like to know how to....?

Written by Sue, Wednesday, May 14, 2014       Sunny, very hot and humid, 90's, 

Though I have been sweating up a storm,(old southern saying) I won't complain about the heat and humidity, because I promised Mr P. last winter I wouldn't, no matter how hot and humid it got. ~smile~ I sure hope I will be able to keep this promise, cause a promise is a promise, I forgot to tell him my fingers were crossed. ~smile~

      ~Herb gathering, and preserving~
Has anyone bought herbs at the grocery store lately, such high prices they are charging. Do you use herbs, if so, I am here to tell you that you can grow, harvest, dry and make your own herb blends for minimum money..
You don't have to have a large space, herbs do well in containers, and in raised beds, they even like living among your flower beds.
 For some reason my herbs are producing early this year, last week, I gathered, different thyme's, oregano's, parsley, and marjoram. This week sage, and more of the same, herbs should be gathered about mid morning not early, as mid morning is when their flavors are at their peek for the day.

 Wash in cold water,handle with care and  try not to bruise the leaves as that releases some of the oils,
 Place in salad spinner, my salad spinner has become one of my best go to for veggies and herbs, makes work a lot easier and quicker, and quicker works for me, see that brown speck on the leaf it went the way of the trash can, always inspect leaves and stems.
I then place them on the counter with paper toweling underneath, feed sack towels work well too! I also picked strawberries and made more jam.
 There are several methods for drying herbs, a dehydrator is quicker, but I am told, vie the internet, this method might dry the oils to much, I used this method last summer and didn't find that to be true, however.. I have decided to try both ways this year. And then there is
 the old fashion way.  When you air dry, you don't have to keep rotating trays,  I bunched the herbs and placed a small rubber band around them, hung them on  a wooden clothes dryer in a bedroom that is dark, this bedroom has a ceiling fan which I ran on low just to keep the air circulating. 
This is what the herbs look like today, coming along so nicely, I have added a bunch of Mother's Day roses and lavender to dry. Once they are dried I will show how I store them, so stay tuned.
Not hard at all, was it.  
While out dead heading roses today I decided to bring a few inside along with more lavender to dry.I have some great ideas for using lavender, absolutely one of my favorite herbs.

Enjoy your day,
Blessings,
 Sue


Seeing red and loving it~

Written by Sue, Wednesday, May 7, 2014,Sunny, very warm, so nice, temps. high 80's

Our Strawberries are now producing, so what does one do with a big bowl of berries, make jam of course. If you don't grow your own , there are a lot of "pick your own farms" and local farmers markets. I am one of those who believes in supporting local farmers, besides the produce is always fresher.
 Here is how I made mine, going from left to right and skipping the middle photo. ~smile~
Pick berries, wash and drain them, sterilize the jars in dishwasher, place berries in food processor and pulse, measure in pot, add sugar and lemon juice,  put on heat and cook, once the berries begin to boil you will notice foam on top, just place a big helping pat of butter in pot, the foam will dissipate, well almost, cook until jam sheets off of spoon or until the desired consistency, scoop into sterilized jars, wipe tops with clean wet cloth, then place sterilized caps and rings on and tighten, place into the boiling water bath, process for 12 minutes.


Ingredients for jam.
This bowl of berries when chopped measured 16 cups of berries.
I added 8 cups of sugar,(this time around I used organic sugar,) sounds like a lot I know, but jam really has a lot of sugar, when it starts to cook you might want to taste to see if it is sweet enough for you,What's that you say "more sugar" don't laugh after all, the berries determine how much. ~smile~
juice of 2 lemons
1 pat of butter.
And the secret ingredient is "Love".
That's it, easy peasy. The yield was 8 1/2 pints, in jelly jars that would have been double, ~grin~

Tip: you might want to put the jam in decorative jars for gift giving, I will be doing this next time, but these will be going to my family who live far away. Hopefully I will remember to share some ways to make them more appealing, but you really don't need anything the "Jam" speaks for itself.

 I can't remember when I last used Sure Jell, I am trying to  keep everything as organic as possible, and to me there is a taste difference, having said that, feel free to use Sure jell, it certainly is quicker.
I on the other hand take the time when stirring the pot to meditate, pray for loved ones, and listen to my favorite radio station, music always makes everything so much better.

A word of encouragement to  those who have never made jams and jellies, this process might seem a little over whelming to you, but trust me, it really is easy and so satisfying, as long as I have been doing this I always get such a wonderful feeling when I take the jars out of the water bath canner, and I hear the pop, pop, sound of them sealing, but the best reward is when someone says'"Wow! this is the best jam ever,"just as Dh did yesterday, as I always save him some, and just think you made it with your own loving hands!
Just to prove how quickly this is, it only took 2 1/2 hours,from the time I brought the berries to the house, and they were sitting on my counter, time well spent!

Thank you to all who stop by and take the time to read, and for your precious sweet comments, Please feel free to email me if you have any questions!
Blessings, 
Sue

~It has officially opened~

Written by Sue, Saturday, May 3, 2014        Beautiful sunny day, temps. 70's.Good day to a hang laundry outside.

Thursday officially started my food preservation season for 2014,  spinach and kale were the first to be gathered this year! It doesn't take a lot of space to plant a garden, ours is a little large, simply because we share with family and friends!
Without being to over zealous one day soon I hope to share the importance and joy of home gardening, and preserving food. I bet you can hardly wait.~smile~
It is hard to imagine that only a few weeks ago these were tiny seeds being planted into fertile soil, and with a little time, and nurturing,they are now ready to serve us. That's the way it is with our life as Christians we are planted in fertile soil, God nurtures us and after a while we are ready to be used of Him for His service.
II Corinthians 9:10~ Now he who supplies seed to the sower and bread for food will also supply and increase your store of seed and will enlarge the harvest of your righteousness.

~Preparing Spinach for the freezer~
Once gathered, it is washed and rinsed in several waters,if needed the wooded stems are trimmed, 
 I then spin the leaves in a salad spinner until almost dried....
Then placed in air tight Food Saver bags,...  If I were using regular plastic bags I would blanch the leaves for a few minutes, cool in ice water then bag, I opted to try it this way to preserve the nutrients. I hope it works as I have had success with other vegetables.  A Food Saver is a great investment!
 "Voila", ready for the freezer.

Yesterday, as Dh and I were working in the garden I said, "I could stay out here all day,"...and I did ~smile~  the weather was so comfortable, overcast skies with an occasional peeking of the sun, pulling weeds was actually not bad at all.

I love gardening and being near God's creations, where all of my senses are touched in some way, I get to play in fresh air, kissed by the sun with the scent of honeysuckle flowing from the nearby woodlands, Our produce is organic, so tasting is always a must, rinsed first at the nearby faucet.~smile~ Watching butterflies flutter around the flowers, ladybugs feasting on aphids, toads, and the chameleons, along with the call of the Mourning Dove to its mate, birds singing.

In the far distance I hear the nearby train whistle,(one of my favorite sounds) as it nears Beard Station. I have often wondered why I love this sound so much, occasionally, when I can't sleep  at night, and the  house is quiet I hear the train whistle again, it always makes me smile.  Years ago towns were built near train tracks and near rivers, it was for necessities and made for easy travel!

Life is simple here at Pear Tree Lane, but not without problems, but God is my strength and my refuge!

Psalm 46:1 God is our refuge and strength, and ever present help in trouble.



Enjoy your day!
Sue
The farmer and his friends
Thank you so much for coming by, please come and visit anytime.

~Welcome home~

This blog is dedicated to my dear family who live many miles away, and to you dear ladies , who have a heart for keeping the home fires burning. You, who love and cherish your family, and have a desire to create a home that says "Welcome, you are loved and cared for."

My desire is that when you leave that you will be encouraged and know that you too are loved.

Sue~

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