Friday, November 27, 2015

Grandma's Chocolate Covered Cremes

YOU NEED A DRY AIR DAY for good success. Cool crisp day is best.

3 cups of sugar
1/3 c. White Karo syrup
1 c. Water

Stir in sauce pan until sugar melts.

Be sure there are no sugar crystals on the sides of the pan. Grandma always wiped the sides with a paper towel. 

Cover& cook on medium until mixture spins a thread. 

Let cool.

Beat 2 egg whites until stiff.

 Add by whipping into the cold mixture. Grandma whipped this by hand. 

Set aside to cool. Grandma set it outside, but southern weather may not permit this. 

Roll into balls and dip in chocolate

If too soft to roll, add a little confectioners sugar


add pecans or a cherry to center of candy

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Guest Post : Thank God for Farmers

My cousin, Mandy, asked me to post on her blog, about growing up on the farm. We went to the dairy farm to visit our cousins on weekends or holidays.

My memories of Thanksgiving are of large family gatherings around several tables in the immense country kitchen. Mary, the hired help, was the kindest person I had ever met. Mary was Amish or Mennonite; she wore a dark dress with straight pins instead of buttons and was so soft spoken. She was willing to let the kids help any way we could, always teaching us something as we helped in the kitchen. The children sat at our own table, where we could giggle and visit with our cousins.            .

                After lunch on Thanksgiving, we often went out to play in the snow, and the adults would gather around the piano to sing, while my aunt played the piano.  Then my uncle would go take a nap, before it was time for the family to get back out to the barn for the next round of milking.

I always felt so bad for my cousins. They had to get up early in the morning, go out to help milk the cows, or feed the calves. They had more chores than I could ever imagine – many of which had to be done before school or visiting with company. On occasion I got to help feed the calves, which was fun for a change, but I was grateful I did not have to do this every single day.

I did not grow up on the farm, rather, I grew up in the suburbs; close enough to walk to school in less than 5 minutes, to ride our bikes to the community pool or drive our car the mall in 10 minutes. Additional reasons to live in the suburb include; not having to drink warm, whole milk, right after the cow milking was done, or drinking homemade Root beer – with no carbonation.

                I am delighted to say, all my cousins grew into fine adults, and all the chores did not appear to harm them. LOL.   I truly Thank God for the farmers, they keep our nation fed. God make us all uniquely wonderful and awesome. He loves us all. Remember, others may judge you, but God is a loving, forgiving God, and he is Always ready to forgive our sins and Loves us more than we can hope or imagine.

                God Bless

Saturday, November 21, 2015

Guest Post: The Icy Front Steps

So, my Mom asked me to do a guest post with memories of my first Thanksgiving on the farm. Here goes nothing.

It was November of 1989.  She and my Dad were to be married a month later, and I'd never really been outside of Georgia, much less in Wisconsin in late November. My first experience at the farmhouse was slipping on the icy front steps and falling flat on my rear end.  Add to that the stress on a nine-year-old kid who'd experienced the most traumatic year of his life of meeting a house packed with strangers who were family-to-be, and you had an interesting scenario, to say the least.

There's a picture floating somewhere in existence of about 872 people (that might be a mild exaggeration) seated around the dining room table that Thanksgiving day, with me at the end, trying my best to mask my deer-in-the-headlights look with a smile.

So, to summarize my first Thanksgiving at the farm, I bruised my tailbone and felt awkward. Doesn't exactly make for a heartwarming holiday post, does it? :-)

But, honestly, my fondest thoughts of the farm actually have nothing to do with the farm.

Throughout my lifetime, from the day I was born, I've lived within the reality of what many would call a "blended family." The people I knew from the start as my older sister and brother were adopted; I knew that, but I also knew that it didn't matter. There was no prefix or qualifier to our relationship. They were just my sister and brother, as far as I was concerned.

Still, though, that was all I'd ever known. It's a different story and a different lesson when you're suddenly thrust into the unknown.  When your mother and sister have been killed in an automobile accident, the family you'd known all your life forever altered, and mere months later, you find yourself clear across the country seated around a table full of strangers, it's hard to imagine that table full of strangers actually becoming family.

But, that's exactly what happened.

And, it wasn't a marriage license that made it happen; it was love--love that a lady showed in marrying a widower with two sons, and simply claiming them as her own; and, love that her family showed in staking that same claim on me.

If you were to ask my grandparents right now how many grandchildren they have, they'd simply answer, "thirty, and six great-grandchildren." No steps. No halves.  No difference.

You see, the farm is where I first really started to learn what's become a defining lesson in my life:  blood may be thicker than water, but love is thicker than blood; and family isn't defined by bloodlines or legal documents. Family is what you make it to be through the love that's given and received.

In the years since then, my family has grown even more. I've gained siblings and nephews, aunts and cousins I never would've imagined.  But, it all began in that crowded farmhouse on that snow-covered Thanksgiving. Maybe the front steps were a bit icy, but they led into the warmth of home and family.

--Brian Farmer

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Guest Post : Gettin' Back to my Roots ...

Gettin' Back to my Roots...

I have been invited by my sister to contribute to her blog, "Raised in a Barn".  Being raised on a farm just seems like normal to me, cause that was my normal!  I do remember feeling sorry for my friends who lived in "town" because they only had a house and a small yard, and omigosh! we had acres and acres of living space.  Turns out, we weren't as wealthy as I thought we were!  Our parents made us feel like we never lacked a thing.  As an adult, I realize how blessed we were; though not necessarily in physical things.  We were blessed to have a Christian heritage that was passed down through many generations.  We grew up in a household where there was no yelling and fighting between our parents (well, maybe some between the siblings, but it was probably Mandy who started it!)  We thoroughly enjoyed Sunday afternoons, playing with our cousins and uncles. Holidays were a blast, with people everywhere!  To this day, I feel like we have to have lots of people around at holidays.

One thing that I never enjoyed was having to do chores before school, and before we could go anywhere in the evening.  But I even look back at that and am so glad that our parents taught us a good work ethic.  We also learned the art of hospitality.  My parents opened our home to many types of people - missionaries, inner-city youth, foreign exchange students, and foster kids.  We learned that our home could be a haven and a blessing.  This continues to be a love of mine - to entertain and open our home to others.

My husband and I have recently decided to downsize.  We sold our home in "town", bought some acreage in the country, and put a home here.  It is decidedly smaller than our previous house, but seems much easier to manage.  We plan to plant a garden, get some chickens and other livestock, and live off the land. Though it is a further drive to work, we are enjoying it immensely.  There is much work to do, but that's half the fun, right?  We have already be able to entertain here and have plans to make our place a place for God to use.

I thank God for the family he placed me in, for my siblings who are now scattered around the country, and for the blessed heritage I enjoy.

Thanks for letting me share!!

Mandy's Big Sis,

Kandy Chimento
Gettin' Back to my Roots
Liberty Hill, Texas


Thanks to my big sister for guest blogging for me today. Just be sure not to believe "everything" she says!

And, oh, go visit her blog at Gettin' Back to my Roots

Thursday, November 5, 2015

Thanksgiving on the Farm

Finally! It's November! And Thanksgiving is coming!

 I think Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday. It really is that one holiday that brings family together. And the memories are so precious to me. Memories of huge tables set up with what seemed like miles of food, grandma's candied sweet potatoes, and the day after ...making tons of Christmas cookies.

 I've decided to ask some other family members to share a Thanksgiving on the Farm story this month. You'll be hearing from my sister, Kandy; my son, Brian; and hopefully a cousin or two.
And then I'm thinking I could share a few recipes along the way.

I'm looking forward to hearing about things from their point of view. I know that it is going to make the days even more special to me.