Whoa!! Talk about a time lapse! I was talking to my Mom last night on the phone and I told her as I laughed a little – “Everytime I think we have down time, we don’t. It seems like we are constantly doing something!” I guess that’s life in an old house, or maybe life in the country… or maybe even both.
Since it’s been awhile, I’ll break it up into sections so I’m not jumping around so much.
Beware: This could get long…
I want to start off by saying THANK YOU sooo much for all your warm wishes on our baby news. How exciting! When my husband and I started talking about having a third, we both agreed it would be our last – regardless of boy or girl. So this is it. Does it make me sad? No, not really. It’s a decision we both made and agreed on together. But I’m 4 months along now (yes, I kept it a secret from you that long) and doing great! With the holidays coming up around the corner – time is going to fly by and this baby will be here before you know it. ETA: April 27th
FIXING THE BARN?
Well as I said before, things have been a little non-stop around here. After countless calls and attempts, it looks as if our barn will go another winter without being fixed. I’ll be honest – this bothers me alot! But when companies won’t return messages, don’t show up for an estimate when they say they will, or even straight up tell you they won’t get on a barn that big – it makes things a little harder. So we will try again – this time in the Spring – and try to get it done. I would hate to see such a beautiful barn fall to ruins. Especially one as old as this one. The beams on the inside are hand-carved – its amazing! Absolutely beautiful! The pic below is from a year ago (only one I can find right now and its raining outside). Basically looks the same – I think two more metal panels are missing.
Well over the weekend, deer season became active here in Indiana. Although I didn’t get a chance to go out, my husband and his Dad went and hunted the woods behind the house. About an hour or two passed daybreak, I heard the shots and got the phone call that Pappy-in-law got one. Matt and him drug it up the hill and it turned out to be one ugly, scrawny buck. We called him a drop tine 4 point because he boogered up his right antler somehow and had it growing at a downward angle. Ugly or not – he’ll eat.
He hung for about an hour and then we started processing him up. Mostly ground, few steaks, and we did brats this time around. It was nice cause we got to try out our new grinder*, and oh my – it goes thru that meat like butter! Makes me wonder why we ever even hand cranked.
*That grinder is living proof to ALWAYS check your bargain bins at Gander Mountain, or any store for that matter. This particular grinder was a floor model that was originally priced $359.99 – waayyy out of our limits. Because it was a floor model, it was marked down 50%. Still too expensive, we waited for it to get marked down again… and it did. We picked it up a week later for $89.99. We went in half with Matt’s dad, so under $50 for that thing. Because it had no box it was missing a few pieces, so Matt called the store and they gave us a number to call. They ended up sending us all the attachments, plus some for no charge at all. To sum it up nicely = BEST DEAL EVER!
But after a few hours of working, we had to clean up and head to my niece’s 1yr birthday party… (who on Earth schedules a birthday party on opening day in the middle of the afternoon??) After that, we came back and got back to work doing the brats. Although a ton of work – it was so worth it. We made mostly original and then added some jalapenos last minute so got a small batch of those.
For anyone who is interested in what we used to make the brats, we used a sausage seasoning kit made by Hi-Country.
I bet we got it at Gander Mountain. We got it at Rural King. It comes with the seasoning, cure, and casings and can season up to 30lbs of meat. Super easy – just time consuming.
Even after splitting the meat, we are left with a nice chunk of meals for our family.
A few days later, we headed down to McCormick’s Creek where Matt and a buddy got drawn for a State Park Deer Reduction Hunt. He was allowed to get 3 deer if he could – regardless of buck or doe. But after one morning hunting there, he was done and left early to come home. The park had 60 hunters that morning – and they were all in the same spot. Matt said he was in his spot at 5:30AM, and he watched 7 hunters walk up and pick spots around him… one of which was straight across from him. He said it was crazy and not safe at all. He said he couldn’t take a shot if he wanted to – and when shots did ring out – he felt nervous. So they left and came home to hunt in the backyard 🙂 Saw some, but no clear shot.
And besides from all that – I’m not sure if anyone else does this, but I have a tendency to “winter clean” instead of “spring clean”. I think its my way of dealing with cabin fever. But yes, it has been in full swing here lately. I’m not sure if it’s the thought of another being coming into the house soon, but I just look around and I feel like my house is so cluttered and has become a somewhat obsession in cleaning. Although progress is being made, I feel like I’ve barely made a dent. I’m sure it’ll be better when the bags marked “donate” are taken out.
I think it’s safe to say that our canning season has finally came to an end… and I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t a little bit happy about it. Canning is a long and at times tiresome task to take on. Although I firmly believe it’s well worth it, towards the end you start to get mad at countless apples sitting on the counter. Our garden wasn’t exactly great this year, with the overspray wiping out a whole section, the rain drowning out are seeds more than once and our hospital stint – but we did get a good amount from it. I had been keeping a count on the sidebar over there on the right, but I’m sorry to say that it is not accurate. I know I dropped the ball on my record keeping this year so hopefully I can stick with it next year. Call me a nerd, but I think those kinds of statistics are interesting 🙂
Well I think that about sums it up around here. From my family to yours: Take Care!