Sunday, September 25

Apple Butterin' Day 'n' Stuff

Apple Butter Abounds!
I spent the day last Saturday making apple butter with my mother-in-law and sister-in-law (I know, I'm getting behind on my posts!) and we made quite a bit with two bushels of apples.  I have canned apple butter once before, five years ago, when my mother-in-law first showed me how to can.  We use a favorite recipe of hers, complete with a secret ingredient (and if I told you what it was, it wouldn't be a secret anymore, would it??).  What I thought would be an all-day event, though, turned into a half-day event, and I was done with my last jar and cleaning up at 3 pm.  Not bad!  Although it had been five years since I'd done it, it seemed to come back fairly quickly.  Now my husband is stocked with 29 quarts and two partial pints of apple butter--probably enough for another five years.  And enough to give away for Christmas presents as well. :)  Below are a few photos of the process and progress.
Phone pic--cooking the apple butter
Phone pic--sterilizing the jar and lids
Phone pic--just what we used for canning
Phone pic--some of the finished jars
At home--the final results!

So Much To Do!
We have been very busy lately.  Things are not going to slow down, either!  We have been gone or busy every weekend in September so far.  We are going to be home next weekend, so we are planning to have a late-season garage sale to get rid of some unnecessary stuff from the stuffmart.  But after that, craft shows abound for The Sunflower Tree.  Plus, the holidays are quickly approaching, and there are several fall birthdays in my family.  There will be no time for rest!  But that's okay, I always love this time of year: the trees changing, the different smell and feel of the air, the apple cider and other apple treats, and just enjoying the new season that God has given us.  With the changes in temperature, though, seems to come sinus problems and allergies for both me and my husband.  Such is life!  It is still my favorite season.  I took the time to try a few new recipes last week, and boy were they good!  One was Chicken Vegetable Turnovers, and the other was Blueberry Turnovers.  I have posted them on The Recipe Swap, so feel free to check them out.  I think you'll like them!  Great for a chilly day!

I don't know about you, but I have an easy time getting wrapped up and run down with things that go on, and more so when I'm overly busy, like what I've been experiencing lately.  It's times like these that I need to remember that God is more important than anything I could be doing or planning for in my life, because God is so much bigger than my little world.  If I focus too much on this world and not enough on the next, then I get discouraged and frustrated.  "A cheerful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones." (Proverbs 17:22)  The enemy goes to great lengths to keep our focus off of God by using so many types of distractions.  Keep in constant conversation with God, no matter what your circumstances.  He gives us strength to get through anything!

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