Canning Jalapeño Peppers

I recently purchased a canning kit and decided to try it out on a harvest of fresh jalapeños from my raised bed garden.  Here is a little montage of my first batch.

They were hot and delicious!

Operation Impact 2016

Katey with her team

Katey with her team

Please pray for Katey and the 35 other missionaries who are currently taking part in Operation Impact. This 3 week program in Oklahoma is purposed to present the gospel of Jesus Christ to children.

The six teams will be hosting Bible Clubs for children each weekday where they will share the gospel, teach songs, lead verses, and tell missionary stories.

Please pray that many children would attend each of the Bible clubs and that they would put their faith in Jesus Christ as Savior.  Additionally, pray that each team member would stay personally connected to the Lord throughout this ministry outreach.

Operation Impact 2016

Operation Impact 2016

First Friday of June

First Friday of June

Good afternoon!  Did you know that today is a national holiday?  Most Americans were unaware as they ate breakfast this morning that today is National Donut Day!  That’s right, a whole day dedicated to sweet, round, dough balls often coated in frosting.  Who makes up these strange national holidays anyway?

We honored this sweet holiday by making donuts!  I wish I could say we made them from scratch, but we took advantage of a box mix that was collecting dust in our pantry instead!  I’ve never made them before and, let me tell you, these lil’ guys were some of the best I’ve ever had!

Here is the recipe that we used:

Donuts~

2 large eggs
3/4 cup water
8 tbsp. unsalted butter, melted, and cooled.
Stonewall Kitchen Red Velvet Donut Mix

Frosting~

2 tbsp. unsalted butter
softened 6 oz. cream cheese
softened Milk or cream
optional Stonewall Kitchen Cream Cheese Frosting Mix

Directions:

Preheat oven to 375. Grease donut pan. Mix together eggs, water, and butter with mixer.  Stir in donut mix. Mix on low until moist and smooth without over mixing.  Spoon batter into donut pan, filling each donut cup 1/2-full. Bake 9-11 minutes.  Allow to cool in pan 5 minutes before placing on a wire rack.  Cool completely.

Frosting Directions:

Combine frosting mix with butter and cream cheese with a mixer.  Beat on high until well combined and very smooth.  You may add a little milk or cream for a softer consistency.  Carefully spread frosting on top.

While these weren’t exactly homemade, but they sure tasted scrumptious.  We also had fun making them!

Whether our motives were patriotic or just an excuse to eat them, we are proud to say that we honored this national holiday and hope you will do the same.

John Deere Model E Restoration

When our family purchased our home four years ago, the prior owner left behind an old John Deere Model E hit-n-miss engine.  I have an appreciation for old things so you can image how grateful I was when he said that he wanted me to have it.

It sat untouched in the garage until last October when I decided to start tearing it apart to see just how extensive the project would be.  I decided that it would be nice to restore the engine and use it to make homemade ice cream.

Original Cart Design

This is a picture of a restored engine and cart done by someone else but gives you an idea of how John Deere originally sold these engines.  They were mounted on a pair of wooden skids which had cast iron wheels and a simple handle.  Farmers would typically use these engines to power irrigation pumps, saws, or anything else that could be driven by a belt.  I have seen many people use these engines to make ice cream but I have never seen one that sat on a pair of skids like the original so that became the goal.

For this cart, I would use pressure treated 4×4 stock and plane it down to the original skid height and width dimensions.  These however would be ~40 inches longer to accommodate the freezer and drive assemblies.  After the initial mock-up, I realized that six inch cast wheels mounted to the single 4×4 skid would leave the ice cream rig a little too low to the ground so I decided to install eight inch wheels and add another 4×4 below the skid for height.

Here is a short video montage highlighting various stages of the project.

Those pretty fingernails holding the piston rings were not mine I assure you.  They belong to my wonderful wife who graciously offered her support over the last seven months.  I think she may have been even more excited than I to see it run for the first time!

I could not have completed this without the help of my friend Richard Hornbaker.  His membership at TechShop gave us access to state-of-the-art equipment we used to turn axles, mill wheels, and press wheel bearings.  I see an example of Christ in the way Richard serves others and am grateful for his friendship.

What Will You Do?

Corporations all around the world are rapidly joining the fight to change the definition of marriage.  With a vengeance, they are embracing an agenda and celebrating a lifestyle that the Bible teaches is sin, all under the guise of “acceptance, inclusion, and diversity”.  I believe this video is a stark reminder to all Christians that we could soon find ourselves in the position of having to either stand alone in defense of Biblical truth, or give way to fear and bow to the golden image of a sinful culture.

The example in this AFA video is not something that is coming, it’s here now!  If you’re like me, an employee of a large corporation, the prospect of either losing a job or being denied a job for which you’re well qualified, because of adherence to Biblical standards, is very real.

As for me, I will serve Jesus Christ and stand unapologetically in support of the Biblical definition of marriage.  What would will you do?

“Disagreement is not hatred, and the truth is not hate speech. The truth is only hate speech to those who hate the truth.”

Bryan Fischer

How to de-seed a Pomegranate

Pomegranates are a delicious fall/winter treat, but many people are afraid of the mess or simply don’t know how to get the seeds out easily.

Once you have managed to open a pomegranate, you can go right ahead and eat it. But if you take the time to separate the arils (the seeds) from the white skin they’re attached to, your pomegranate eating experience will be less messy and taste much better.