Category Archives: Honey

Our Harvest Picnic

Sunday we invited friends and family to the farm for a picnic. While many of those invited could not make it for various reasons everyone who came seemed to have a great time.

IMG_3192

My husband added some seasonal decorations to welcome our guests.

IMG_3203

The bees wasted no time finding the sunflowers he picked.

 

The chickens roaming around, pecking and scratching, added to the ambience.

 

As summer nears it’s end Black Eyed Susans, Hibiscus and Phlox continue to adorn the farm.

When we host guests this time of year we like to make it a harvest party that includes foods from our garden. Included in yesterdays meal was potato salad – with homegrown potatoes, celery and chives along with our farm fresh eggs; apple crisp – with apples from our trees; pickled garlic scapes  https://donteatitsoap.com/2017/06/15/a-year-in-growing-garlic-part-viii-garlic-scapes/ ; and my garlic and dill chip dip https://donteatitsoap.com/2015/08/14/simple-and-fun-recipes/ . We also had fresh lettuce leaves and sliced tomatoes to top the burgers which were made with locally raised grass fed beef.

While I took many pictures of the scenery before our guests arrived I somehow forgot to take pictures our guests and the activities they enjoyed.IMG_3200Trooper played in the pond early in the day, but later on some of our young guests enjoyed catching perch in the pond and building sand castles on the beach.

I also neglected to get photos of my brother-in-law flying his remote control airplanes. He brought two planes and was able to use the path which we keep mowed around our back field as a runway. He also brought equipment that enabled him to allow others to participate. It’s called buddy boxing. To really explain buddy boxing you probably need someone who understands technology better than I do, but since I’m the one writing I’ll tell you my simplified understanding of how it works. Two transmitters or controllers are linked together and set to operate the plane. The student’s controller is allowed to operate the plane unless the teacher feels the plane is in trouble at which point the teacher has the ability to override the student’s system and take control of the plane.

I think this is a great way to be able to teach kids, or even adults, who want to learn to fly remote controlled planes without having to worry about damaging the plane or endangering objects, people or pets on the ground. Pete was certainly a great teacher and the kids had a great time flying the planes.

Other activities included greeting everyone with hugs, catching up with friends and family, most of whom we haven’t seen in a year or more, my husband gave garden tours and showed off the huge, mammoth sunflower which came up as a volunteer this year. “If it’s not the biggest sunflower you’ve ever seen I’ll give your money back,” he told people. Maybe he should have charged because everyone agreed that it was the biggest they had ever seen.

IMG_3216

While it wasn’t a homegrown water melon, it was among the produce that our grandson (and future farmer) Jackson, enjoyed. He also got excited about watching the chickens eat corn on the cob.

Some guests left with garlic and some with honey and several left with regrets about having to leave so early and hopes of returning soon. It was a great day filled with friends, family, food and love and we are grateful for all those who visited.

Unfortunately we were so busy and having such a great time that we forgot to hold one of our planned events. The rock picking contest. Participants were to be given a milk crate, shown to one of two areas that have been plowed this summer and told fill their crate with as many rocks as possible.  Cash prizes were to be awarded. Oh well guess we will be picking up rocks this week. 😉

Okay, I’m just kidding about the rock picking contest, but we will be picking up rocks this week. Have a great day.

 

Two New Soap Recipes- The Results Are In

In April I posted about the two new soap recipes that I had made. One was made with   dandelions infused in the water and oil. Honey was also added. The second was made with maple sap and maple sugar sand. https://donteatitsoap.com/2017/04/29/two-new-soap-recipes/?iframe=true&theme_preview=true

My husband and I have now sampled both of these soaps and we are extremely happy with the results.

The dandelion soap, which I am now calling Sweet Dandelion, has a deep golden color to it. I used this soap before my husband and fell in love with it. “Silky” was the term I thought of when I felt the lather on my skin and though it rinses off well it leaves my skin feeling soft. I did not share my thoughts with my husband before he used it. Once he had showered with it I asked what he though. “Good lather, smooth, and rinses off well, I like it!” were his comments. I then shared my thoughts and we agreed my description “silky” translated to his use of the word smooth.

A few days later one of my sisters (J.B.) stopped by so I gave her a sample bar. I told her what it was and asked for her opinion. She said she would try it the following morning. Around 9:00 a.m. the following morning J.B. called me. She loved this soap. She agreed with our descriptions of silky and smooth and told me she would like two more bars.

After my husband mentioned several times that he wished I could make another batch of the dandelion soap I found myself walking our back field in search of dandelions. By this time the dandelions which had blanketed our property a few weeks earlier were now few and far between. I was able to collect a couple cups of dandelion blossoms. I used half to make a tea-type infusion, which I put in the freezer, and the other half are infusing in oil as I write. I will be able to make one more batch of Sweet Dandelion soap between now and next spring.

We were also pleased with the maple soap which I have decided to call MMMaple Soap. I am not surprised that maple sugar sand which is made up mostly of calcium salts and malic acid seems to have dissolved, nor am I surprised that this soap has incredible lather since sugars added to soap have that effect. I do have some of the sap that we saved for this recipe in the freezer yet so I will also be able to make this recipe one more time before next spring.

Anyone interested in purchasing either of these soaps may contact me by email at ruth20012001@yahoo.com and put soap in the subject line.

 

Removing A Splinter

Usually when one of us gets a splinter we first try tweezers to pull it out, but usually it is far enough beneath the skin that it can not be reached with the tweezers, so we sterilize a needle and perform minor surgery, digging a hole into the skin and poking around until we can fish the foreign object out.

A few weeks ago when I ended up with a wood splinter in the palm of my hand the first thing I did was ignore it. I was busy and didn’t feel like dealing with it. It wasn’t painful and I remembered my husband saying, “wood will always work it’s way out.” The following day it was still there. It still wasn’t painful, but after my husband asked me a couple of times if I had gotten it out yet, I decided I better try.

Instead of the usual means I thought I would try something that I had only read about – honey. I have read that honey will draw a splinter out. Since I was busy that day and did not have time to sit around with honey on my hand, I decided it would have to be covered. I put a small dab of honey on a band aid and put it over the splinter. I then put on a latex glove so I could go about my tasks without losing the band aid. Within a half hour I began feeling pain in the area of the splinter. It wasn’t severe pain, but when something touched that area of my hand it felt like, I don’t know, I guess it felt like there was a splinter in it.

After about an hour, when I removed the glove, the band aid wanted to come off too. I lifted one end and saw the area was now red and weeping a bit. The honey was apparently doing something. I took that band aid off and put another dab of honey on a second band aid and covered the area again. It was difficult to keep the band aid in place on the palm of my hand, and after about another hour that one, too, was ready to come off. The area was still red, and as I pressed on the area where the splinter had gone into my hand clear liquid came out along with the whole splinter.

Out of habit I thought I better clean the wound with hydrogen peroxide to prevent infection. Interestingly when I poured the peroxide over the area it ran off like water. There was absolutely no bubbling. I knew that honey was said to be antibacterial, and I believed that it was, but up until that time I had no proof. The redness gradually went away and my hand healed nicely.

Please don’t ask me how or why this works, I can only testify that it worked for me. 🙂