Thursday, May 29, 2008

Missions' Trip

Joshua & Valerie will be going on a Missions' Trip with our church, HOFCC, August 23-31, 2008.

“Gleanings for the Hungry” was founded in 1982 by Wally and Norma Wenge, who after having spent time in Thailand on outreach with Youth With A Mission (YWAM), saw the need for fruit there. They remembered all the fruit that goes to waste in the rich produce valley of San Joaquin, and the idea of Gleanings was birthed. “Gleanings for the Hungry” is located in the small agricultural community of Dinuba, California. This community is about 35 miles southeast of Fresno, California. Cull fruit that can't be sold because its too small, has a split pit, or a mark on the skin of peaches and nectarines are donated by fruit packers in the area. The fruit is run through a processing line where it is washed, sorted, pitted, and put on trays. It is then sulfured for 4 hours to preserve the color, sun-dried out in the field, and then packed into 4 gallon plastic buckets to send to the world's hungry. They will be working from 8-5, Monday-Friday, washing, drying & packaging the fruit. You can check out more about Gleanings at:

Please pray that they will be able to raise the money ($140 each), for safe travels, closer devotion with their Lord & Savior Jesus Christ, and for the strength they will need while volunteering at Gleanings.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008


Today was my first attempt at making homemade cheese. I made mozzarella & ricotta cheese. I was very happy with the results! I purchased a "beginner's kit" from New England Cheesemaking ( which included a DVD, book "Home Cheese Making", and a 30-minute Ricotta/Mozzarella Kit.

Here's the ingredients needed for making Mozzarella Cheese - whole milk, citric acid and rennet.

The milk heating in the pot.

After you add the rennet, the cheese curds & whey seperate.

The cheese curds after removing them from the pot.

Draining the excess whey off the cheese.

The finished product!! And yes it only took 30 minutes!!


Ingredients: Goat milk & apple cider vinegar

Heating the milk.

After adding the vinegar, the cheese curds & whey seperate very quickly.

Draining the ricotta.

The finished product!

Friday, May 16, 2008

Being Frugal

Being "Frugal" is a discipline that I have always tried to follow, but with the rising cost of gas & groceries (due to gas prices) I have been challenged to find ways to cut costs. God is our provider and I glorify Him by using the things He gives us wisely. Early on in our marriage, when money was VERY tight, I made a lot of things from scratch out of necessity. Then raises came, more children came, I started homeschooling & quite frankly, I got lazy. I am now doing some of those things again: making homemade bread products, spice mixes, mayonnaise, etc. I have been greatly inspired by some of the young mothers at our church & their websites – check them out here:;; THANK YOU Lindsay & Kimi!! My next project is to learn to make cheese – we’ve been getting almost ½ gallon of goat milk a day from Uni! That’s only milking her once, too! Here are some pictures of Valerie & I making homemade whole wheat rolls. YUMMO!

Freshly ground Whole Wheat Flour (we use Hard White Wheat Berries)

Mixing the dough - Thank you Rick, for my K-Tec Mixer (9 years & still loving it!)

The dough after it had doubled.

Mom kneading the dough.

Valerie shaping the rolls.

The rolls after shaping, but before they had risen.

The finished product - Yummo!

Thursday, May 8, 2008


It's finally spring here in Lebanon - after our snow April 20th. The apples trees (5) have blossoms, the grapes have buds, and we have finished the first tilling for our garden.
Our artichoke plants (4) survived being dug-up & transported!
We found a great buy at BiMart on starts & bought some lovely peppers, tomatoes, onions, herbs & broccoli.
Our garden will be smaller than the when we were in Ridgefield. This plot is ~43 ft X 30 ft. We will have tomatoes, peppers (bell & hot), broccoli, corn, carrots, lettuce, baby bok choy, beans, cucumbers, spinach, and onions.