5/1/07 - 6/1/07

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A Happy Meal That Didn't Come From McDonalds

You will find, as your children get older, that each one has a special dream. Jacob's is to hunt. He has finished his hunting safety course, and has his own gun now, and he's studying very hard, but the real question was...could he really do it..or would he be afraid to take the life of an animal to put food on the table? He doesn't want to get 'the big buck' with lots of points, but he really does want to hunt.

So how does a mom help make a dream like this come true? Well, she says YES when he asks her to 'please buy one meat chick". And she helps him scald, pluck, clean and fry it when it's time to do so. I wasn't sure we would have the courage to dispatch a live chicken we had raised, but unfortunately, meat chickies (rock Cornish hens) are bred to grow fast and will die of a heart attack if you don't process them by a certain age. Last week, after much searching on the internet for how to do this humanely and correctly, Tim, Jacob, and I took the plunge and dispatched "Mrs. Happy". She was not happy at the time as the weather was getting hot and she was miserable due to her huge size. I have to say God prepared me for this, because my daddy was an urban homesteader.I had already helped dispatch and pluck many , many a chicken. I don't like it.--but I can do it.

When everything was ready, we entered the 'pioneer' era of Little House on the Prairie...and processed our first meat chicken. Tim and I were very proud of how Jacob handled the situation with fortitude and no squeamishness. It wasn't easy, but he took a little step into manhood in bearing up and doing what needed to be done. Mrs. Happy is in heaven now (if chickens go to heaven), but we all enjoyed the gift she gave us. (All eExcept Andrew who is our 'nurturer' and to whom every animal is a pet.--He had mashed potatoes and gravy for dinner.) 

Next time we will buy five white chickens and nobody is going to name them!! Tim feels confident that Jacob will be able to help him take care of processing other animals once he begins to hunt. He will only be allowed to hunt for the purpose of bringing in food...but we know he will be able to handle the work required. We will certainly have to 'cull' some of our flock later on as we can't feed 35 chickens who aren't laying eggs, and I know I will be able to count on our little man to take care of it for me. What a guy! (I should think raising girls would be so much simpler! Sigh...)

PS. Yes, the chicken tasted delicious!


My Son's Graduation Cake

I finally finished Elisabeth, Andrew's friend,  and  my son, Andrew's graduation cake for their party on Saturday. I can't believe I have another 'baby' finished with homeschooling!!!

I taught Elisabeth how to ice and decorate a cake with the Wilton method and she picked it up really fast. She did the stars and the squiggles on the top cake (her idea) and the side and back border.  I made the squiggles with a cake comb. This is the first time in years that I have used this tool. This is a two layer 11 x 15 cake with a two layer 9 x 13 cake on top. It's the first time I ever used dowels rods and a second cake board.

Rebekah made the graduation cap and braided gold embroidery thread to put on cap. I baked a base for the grad cap of chocolate cake in a large custard cup. We had a really fun time deciding how to put this together.
“There's nothing half so pleasant as coming home again.” ~ Margaret Sangster

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