02 October 2008

Let us ALL Press On

There's just something about fall and the pungent smell of apples and the crisp feel to the air that makes me happy. Don't get me wrong - I happen to enjoy all of the seasons mostly equally, but I especially love fall.

Some of the leaves are starting to turn, and they are the most beautiful colors! Perhaps one of the reasons I love fall so much as an adult is because I never really saw it for longer than a week as a child. Autum in Alaska arrives just like Spring does. Quickly and without warning. One day you'll see green leaves on the trees; the next you'll see a couple of trees that are starting to turn; the next ALL of the trees will have turned, and the next day practically you'll see naked trees. As a result, there's not much of a chance to enjoy the beautiful fall colors that other people can brag about.

I'm enjoying seeing the leaves turn colors here. Not so much at our house - the evergreens stay, well... ever green. It's the leaves on the trees downtown that are fascinating to me. They're starting to turn the most brilliant shades of red and orange; and there's the deep purple of the plum trees... it's all beautiful. If only there would be a constant barrage of that white stuff that falls in other states. Then, I might consider this to be heaven. Right now, it's close, but winters just don't cut it. (Heat wise, I'm not complaining. We've had our wood stove burning for at least one night of every month so far this year.)

Then there's the smell of apples that I love so much. Mr. Snicklebutt has been working on a cider press that we purchased for less than $1.00/year of its life. It's in remarkably good condition for being 134 years old, but it does need a little bit of work. So... he's re-building the baskets to squish the apples in. Once he's finished, we'll put the press to work and make our own cider. It is, after all, cheaper than that $6.00/gallon stuff we can find at any other farm! We will probably can the stuff too. It would be better for us to store it on our shelves than in the freezer - no matter how delicious the frozen concentrate may be.

So... before it gets too late - let us all press on... and get some good cider in addition to the great fall memories!

01 October 2008

When Life Takes Over

Life... a simple word with so many different meanings. For example: Life can be the beginning of something - bringing a child into the world gives it life. Or, life can be simply the things that we do on a day to day basis.

In this case, MY LIFE refers to the day to day things that I do (or don't do as the case may be...). This past week, LIFE has meant that I have spent nearly every waking moment canning and processing food for my food storage. The moments NOT spent doing that were spent either picking the food to process it, washing the food to process it, keeping the kids from eating the food that I intended to process, feeding the baby, and feeding my children. Not much of the "NOT canning and processing food" moments was spent cleaning the house.

It has, however, been productive. I have discovered that I need to take breaks. I love canning and processing food, so taking this break from the OTHER life that I lead (that of being a full time wife and Mother and Housekeeper and Chauffeur and whatever else being a Mom entails) has been good for me. I have come to realize that I rather like sitting on the couch and reading books to my children. I thoroughly enjoy preparing a good sit down meal for my family. And, I like having a clean house.

Why does it matter so much to me that I have a clean house? It has been my experience that if I want to have the Spirit of the Lord dwell in my home, I MUST have a clean house. Quite simply, He will not dwell in unclean places. That's not to say that He has been absent from our home this past week, I have done a fairly good job of making sure that things have stayed on the north side of clean, but it has been harder for me to maintain that cleanliness that I feel is required to invite the Lord to be a guest. And it shows in the way my children treat each other and how they treat themselves.

So as much as I enjoy taking this break from life, somehow I need to figure out a way to fuse the two lives together. Perhaps that's a job for Wonder Woman...