Saturday, September 19, 2009

Apple Picking Time~But Which Kind Should I Pick?

Fall~the apple-picking season is here. Whether you pick your own or you buy them at the store it can be confusing~with so many varieties available. I want apples to eat, to bake with and to can. We added four more trees to our orchard last night~two being apple. That inspired me to do a study~here is a  easy apple guide.
  • For eating straight from the basket, crisp, juicy, and tangy varieties are best. Red Delicious is the most popular eating apple, but if you prefer a denser, tarter snack, try a Granny Smith, or a softer-fleshedMcIntosh. Or check out the distinctive tastes of local farm varieties likeNewton, Pippin, Macoun, or Sweet Sixteen.
  • To make applesauceMcIntosh is moist and flavorful. Cortlands andBraeburns also make good choices.
  • When bakingRome apples are recommended because they hold their shape well. You can also try Fuijis, which are sweeter, wetter, and have a spicy flavor.
  • In pies, a mix of apples is best. Include Golden Delicious for sweetness and good shape, a tart apple like Granny Smith, and some flavorful varieties like Pippin, Winesap, Crispin and Jonagold.To check out the entire world of apple varieties and usage, as well as delicious recipes, click here.
When I get apples I love to display them in a pretty bowl on the counter or table. But that is not a wise choice! If you keep your apples in the refrigerator they will last 10 times longer. Although apple bowls are beautiful~they will not keep your apples crispy for long if you leave them on the countertop.
The old saying~ "An apple a day, keeps the Doctor away" is really true! Go here to learn all the health benefits from eating a least one apple a day.

Psalm 17:8

 Keep me as the apple of the eye, hide me under the shadow of thy wings,

Proverbs 25:11 

 A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in pictures of silver.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Roasted Pumpkin Seeds~

I just love this time of year. I spent yesterday decorating my front porch. I am having some Homeschool Moms and a few friends over next week for a Mom's Night Out~so I am in a hurry to get finished.  I plan on getting the back porch decorated today. I will post pictures soon. All of this Fall decorating has me in the mood for our favorite Fall snacks.

I make my seeds a bit different. 

I roast my pumpkin seeds in butter first  until slightly browned. Then I add taco seasoning to them. Spread them on a cookie sheet and bake at 250 degrees. After about 30 minutes ~stir them. Bake 1/2-1 hour more or until crunchy. Enjoy!

It's Just So Simple~

Acts 4:12 Acts 4:12 

 12Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.

I have spent most of my life with children. I have been a stay at home Mom for most all my life. I have raised my children and a few others along the way. I educate my children at home and teach Sunday School to 5Th graders. I teach classes for our local Homeschool Group. I spend my days making lessons as simple as I can!  

This morning in my Bible reading I am reading in the book of Acts. In the 4Th chapter of Acts~Peter and John have just spent time with Jesus. They were charged up. You know when we spend time with Jesus we will be charged up too! They were bold~when we spend time with Jesus we will be bold! The religious leaders of the day were mad at them and wanted then to stop preaching this very message~

 12Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved. 

They were going to be arrested if they did not stop proclaiming that Jesus and Jesus alone is the only way to eternal life~salvation. 

You may ask~what did they do? Well I knew you would want to know. So as Paul Harvey would say, "Here is the rest of the story."

Acts 4:19-20 

 19But Peter and John answered and said unto them, Whether it be right in the sight of God to hearken unto you more than unto God, judge ye.

 20For we cannot but speak the things which we have seen and heard.

 They chose to be right with God over being right with the leaders of the day. They were so excited they just could not help but tell all the things they had seen and heard when they had spent time with Jesus.

Dear Friend~the message is so simple. Jesus is the only way to eternal life. It is not by my Baptist baptism or church membership, Mary can not give us eternal life, being good cannot save us, going to church cannot save us and saints cannot get us to Heaven. The Bible says that only by Jesus and what He did on the cross can we be forgiven and justified of our sins. You see~ if Mary could get us to Heaven ~why did Jesus have to die? If my working out my salvation by being good could get me to Heaven ~Jesus could have just stayed in Heaven. If baptism could get us to Heaven ~why in the world did they beat Him, spit upon Him, pull the hair from His face and run a sword through His side?

 No ~it is clear all through the Word of God that what Jesus did on the gruesome Old Rugged Cross ~was enough to wash away the sin of all mankind. This is the best news in the world. I can chose to pay for my own sins or I can accept Jesus' payment for my sin. This is a no brainer! I accept the free gift of salvation~hands down!

It is such a simple message ~but it was not a simple death for the Saviour. Have you asked Jesus to forgive you of your sin, to cleanse you and be Lord of your Life? I beg you if you have never asked Him~today is the day to receive this simple invitation! It is the best decision I have ever made.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Gooseberry Patch Recipe~ Fresh Apple Cake

 September E-letter 2009
I collect Gooseberry Patch Cookbooks~I just love them. This recipe is from my e-mail this month. I am going to make this today~thought I would share! It looks so good!

Fresh Apple Cake
From Our Favorite Harvest Recipes, this is a delicious treat any time of year. 

5 baking apples, cored, peeled and sliced
2 t. cinnamon
2-1/2 c. plus 5 T. sugar, divided
3 c. all-purpose flour
1/2 t. salt
4 eggs, beaten
1 c. oil
2 t. vanilla extract
1/3 c. orange juice
1-1/2 t. baking powder
1-1/2 t. baking soda

Toss apples with cinnamon and 5 tablespoons sugar; set aside. Mix remaining ingredients together; blend well. Pour 1/3 of the batter into a greased and floured 10" tube pan; layer with half of the apples. Repeat layers and pour remaining batter on top. Bake at 350 degrees for 1-1/2 to 1-3/4 hours, or until a toothpick inserted in the center removes clean. Cool on a wire rack for 10 minutes; invert tube pan and remove to cool completely. Frost with Brown Sugar Icing. Serves 12 to 15.

Brown Sugar Icing:

1/2 c. shortening
1 c. brown sugar packed
1/4 c. milk
2 c. powdered sugar 

Combine all ingredients and blend until smooth.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Easy As Pie ~Pie Crust Recipe

  • 1 1/3 cup(s) all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon(s) sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon(s) salt
  • 1/4 cup(s) chilled shortening
  • 3 tablespoon(s) chilled unsalted butter, cut into 3 pieces
  • 3 tablespoon(s) (or more if needed) ice water


  1. In a bowl, combine flour, sugar, and salt. Using a pastry blender, cut in shortening and butter until mixture resembles fine crumbs with some small pieces of butter remaining. Add ice water, 1 tablespoon at a time, drizzling over flour mixture and tossing with a fork, just until dough begins to hold together. Turn dough out onto plastic wrap; gather into a ball. Wrap in plastic wrap; press into a disk shape. Refrigerate 1 hour or overnight.
  2. Unwrap dough. On a lightly floured surface, with a lightly floured rolling pin, roll pastry to a 12-inch round. Fold pastry in half; ease gently into a 9-inch pie plate. Unfold dough; trim edges to 3/4-inch overhang. Turn edges under, then crimp with fingers. Refrigerate 30 minutes to 1 hour, then follow recipe directions.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Crock Pot Steak Chili~

With school taking much of our day I like to put supper on in the morning as I prepare breakfast. It sure saves time and the mess! Also by 5 o'clock I am tired. Here is a new recipe~Homemade Goodness!

Crock Pot Steak Chili

2 T. oil
2 lbs. beef round steak, cut into 1-inch cubes
1-1/2 c. onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1-1/3 c. water, divided
1 c. celery, chopped
2 15-oz. cans kidney beans, drained and rinsed
2 14-1/2 oz. cans diced tomatoes
16-oz. jar salsa
15-oz. can tomato sauce
1-1/2 T. chili powder
1 t. ground cumin
1 t. dried oregano
1/2 t. pepper
2 T. all-purpose flour
2 T. cornmeal
Garnish: diced tomatoes, sour cream, crushed tortilla chips or shredded Cheddar cheese 

Heat oil in a large sauté pan over medium heat; add steak, onion and garlic. Cook over medium heat until steak is browned and onion and garlic are translucent. With a slotted spoon, remove steak, onion and garlic to a slow cooker, leaving juices behind in pan. Add one cup water, celery, beans, tomatoes with juice, salsa, tomato sauce and seasonings to slow cooker; stir. Cover and cook on low setting for 8 hours. Shortly before serving time, whisk together flour, cornmeal and remaining 1/3 cup water until smooth. Add mixture to simmering chili; stir for 2 minutes, until thickened. Garnish as desired. Serves 8.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

September~Inspired by Nature

Here comes Autumn~

A whiff of smoke on the breeze, the first chill in the air, the woods all dressed in gold~and without looking at the calendar we know we have turned the page & it is September. Time to put the "Sweet" in Home Sweet Home.

Summer's loss seems little dear, on days like these.
Ernest Dowson

Gather some bittersweet, grapevine, acorns, leaves, pumpkins, pears, apples, nuts & herbs and celebrate the season. Autumn is the most economical season to decorate !  Just bring in the beautiful colors and textures from outdoors. The sunflowers are growing by the dozen in the wild.  Gather a bunch to grace the dinner table. And don't forget to plant bulbs now for Spring~Happy September from our little Farming on Faith to yours!

It is astonishing how short a time it takes for very wonderful things to happen.
Francis Burnette



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