Thursday, September 17, 2015

Apple Chips

Today the kids and I made some apple chips, it didn't take long at all and they were so good... well, we almost ate every one by this evening. Grant it, we only had 3 apples to use. But that won't be the case for long, because we are hoping to pick up a bushel or two soon from our local farmers market.

They are super simple. Cut the apple so you have disks, not wedges. 
I think the apple is so pretty this way. Look! It looks like a little star or flower in the center! 
Aww!
Make sure to remove the seeds.


Sprinkle lightly with cinnamon and sugar. You could add more spices if you like.
Cinnamon
Cloves
Ginger
Allspice
Nutmeg
All those would be lovely... 
But for today, we only used cinnamon and sugar.


We set the dehydrator on about 150* and let them begin to dry. You could do this with your oven also.  Don't dry them out completely. There is a crispness and a chewiness that we LOVED. 
If you want to store them for a long time, I would suppose they should be dried longer. 
Tonight, after church, I had a cup of freshly pressed cold apple cider and a few apple chips.
Hooray for apple season! 
Next up... Applesauce
Apple Butter
Fried Apple Pies
Apple Fritters
Apple Dump Cake
Apples, Apples, Apples


Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Making together

For about a week now, I have been telling myself that I have to get my kraut going... Not a hard task by any means, but one I just have to do. And when I have a million things swirling in my head thinking that I need to do one more is sometimes daunting. 
I was resolved though. Yesterday I knew I was going to get it done. 
Thankfully.... I had someone rush in there and ask, 
"Moma! Can I help you? Please!"
I've told you before that sometimes I struggle with the mentality of 
-just let me do it myself- syndrome.
It's usually easier, less messy, a bit faster...
But then, I miss out on this... What if I had went down that road and not let my precious ones help me? And you know what??? They are not that little any more. They've been helping me for so long that they have really become great sources of help! 
I was there, in close proximity, washing up the dishes that we mussed. I was there, snapping a pic. I was there saying, "hang on to the crock while you pound the cabbage"
But pretty much everything else was taken care of by these three. 
Really?
Are my kids becoming that big and self sufficient?

Yeah... they are. 

And I am so proud and so thankful and SO, so grateful for these years we have been home together learning and working together. 
I want to encourage you moms, dads, caregivers...
It doesn't matter if your kids are big or small, take time.
Take time to do SOMETHING together. It doesn't always have to be super fun games or anything. Teach your kids to work alongside you... I didn't ask for one bit of help with this.
I was begged to let them help. (Don't ask me if it happens with dishes or laundry... haha)

A wonderful time and a job well done. 
Thank you Lord for allowing me to enjoy these moments.
Working or playing, we are together and I am forever thankful.




Monday, September 14, 2015

Pumpkin Ideas and The Winner!

I recently had a local customer and friend contact me wanting several sets of pumpkins. She had an idea that she wanted to put together for her fall decor. I got started right away stitching up some pretty little pumpkins for her. 
She told me that when she finished with her decorating that she would send me the pictures... I was so tickled with how beautifully her decorations turned out. What a great idea! She used an empty iron urn and filled it with her colorful pumpkins!
Surrounded by a wreath of berries in front of her gas fireplace. 

Here's a closeup of one of the pumpkins. Isn't it sweet?
I love when someone asks me to make them something and they use it and love the end result. It is one  of THE most satisfying feelings! 
Thanks so much Melissa for sharing your beautiful pictures and your great style!

And now, I want to THANK YOU SO much for the fantastic response to the pumpkin giveaway!
There were entries on Facebook, Twitter, the blog, Instagram, the giveaway was even pinned! It was truly a great response and it just warmed my heart!

The winner is 
Sarah Schuster

Sarah, contact me at heritageacreshomestead@gmail.com to claim your prize!

Also remember if your name wasn't drawn, you may still be able to get your own set of pumpkins through my Etsy store. 

Thanks again to EVERYONE who participated. I appreciate you all so very much!!!



Thursday, September 10, 2015

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffins

This morning I baked my family a batch of pumpkin chocolate chip muffins. They are SO, so, sooooooo good. Definitely a family favorite. I love the flavors of pumpkin and spice so when September rolls around, I tend to think about that often and end up making recipes that show my love! 


Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffins
Makes approximately 2 dozen

Preheat oven to 350*

Ingredients:
4 eggs
2 cups sugar
2 cups pumpkin puree (you can use canned or what you have made yourself)
1.5 cups oil
3 cups flour (half white and half wheat works well)
2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp cloves
1/4 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
1/4 tsp allspice
1 tsp salt

1-2 cups of chocolate chips

Method:
Begin by mixing the eggs with the sugar. Once the eggs are incorporated, add your pumpkin and mix well. Add oil. I allowed this to mix in my kitchenaid while I put together the dry ingredients.

Add all dry ingredients together and mix thoroughly.

Add dry to wet a bit at a time and let it get combined, but don't over mix.

Add chocolate chips, reserving a few for dotting the tops of your muffins.

Prepare your pan:
I used cupcake liners for my muffins. I also greased the tops of the muffin pans for that muffin top to release easily. 

Fill your liner 3/4 full and bake for 15 minutes at 350* 

You will love the soft, moist muffin this recipe produces. 
Enjoy!!!



Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Giveaway!


It's giveaway time! I'm giving away 2 sets of my pumpkins. (A $20+ value) 
All you have to do is leave me a comment here. On Facebook.  Or on Instagram! Each comment or share equals an entry! I will close the entries on Saturday evening at 8. And announce the winner Monday morning! 


Xoxoxo 

Thursday, September 3, 2015

My Autumn Quilt

Very seldom do I make big projects for myself, simply because I am usually trying to make things for others or making things to sell.When I was changing things around here for the seasons in the last couple weeks, I realized that all my quilts were bright, summery colors. I didn't have anything that resembled my-most-favorite-of-all-time season.  So a trip to the store and a little color choices from my husband, who surprisingly has pretty good taste, and this quilt idea was born. 
I posted on instagram that I had a quilt in mind. I played with the color arrangements and since I am VERY much a novice quilter, I decided to make up my own pattern and keep it simple with squares and rectangles.


I bought .5 yard of each fabric besides the chevron... I bought 1 yard of that.  I decided to use muslin for the backing. I like the natural look of it and thought it would work well with the quilt I had in mind.
The hardest part for me, by and far is the piecing. Even with large rectangles, I am just not a seamstress. I sew crooked lines. Sigh... One day, I will improve. I'm sure of it. Practice makes progress, right?

My favorite part is the hand stitching. I allowed the muslin backing to be wider than the quilt top and folded it over and stitched it down by hand to bind the quilt.
I used 100% cotton batting for the inside. To me... if I can... that is ALL I will use. It is SO wonderfully soft! LOVE!

It's a bit wonky... a bit rumpled, but I love that about it. It is SO soft and cozy.
The perfect quilt to throw over you for a little reading, or a little resting on these longer forth coming autumn days.