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I am Sandra - faithful steward. listener. shepherd. dream believer. hard worker. collects brass bells, boots. Jesus follower. contented. star gazer. homemaker. farmer. prayer warrior. country woman. reader. traveler. writer. homebody. living life large.

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

10 Things Thistle Cove Farm Has Taught Me

~ Sandra and Sadie ~
I've been churning butter since last Thursday; finally finished Sunday afternoon. In case you're wondering, there's a little more than eight pounds to a gallon of cream. One pound of cream yields around one-half pound of butter and ten gallons of Jersey cream made somewhere between around forty+ pounds of butter. Maybe more but, frankly, I am so tired my brain stopped working sometime Friday. Maybe Thursday night; it's all a blur.

Suffice it to say, I will never, ever, as God is my witness (shades of Scarlet), be talked into buying ten gallons of Jersey cream again. At least not at one time. Nor will I never, ever churn more than two gallons at one time. Ever. Unless there's serious money involved which means I'm probably safe.

I'll blog about Churning 101 later but it needs to be told, at two separate times, my dasher broke and I churned with my right hand only. I never knew it could be done either but, it's been said, necessity is the mother of invention, and I proved that right.

P. S. NOTE: I lied. Not intentionally but lied nonetheless. Tonight, I was putting the kitchen to rights, before taking my shower so I could then pass out which is what I call sleep after such a bone crushing day, and found the gallon enamel covered bowl containing whipping cream. O lawz. I thought I was done and finished but noooooo. It took an extra hour but I made another four pounds of hand and by hand, I mean working the whipped cream like making bread until it separated into buttermilk and butter. Another four pounds of butter. I swear, the first ten people who call me will gifted with one-half pound of home churned butter. 

It's been raining since Saturday morning and today, in the middle of the day, we had 3 hours of sunshine. I took advantage of sunshine to climb on the tractor and move hay from the middle to the edge of the field. I hate for hay to stand where it was baled; it makes dead places in the pasture and every dead place means nothing will grow...except weeds which aren't wanted. Moving hay bales gave me time to think and what I thought about was what I've learned on the farm. Many, many lessons but these ten are worthy to be told now...imho...grin!

1.  Chores get me out of bed.

2.  Farm work is hard but it keeps me strong and moving forward.

3.  When I'm prepared for the storm, I can sleep through the night.

4.  Nature is the supreme white noise.

5.  God is stronger than my tears or fears.

6.  Each dawn begins a new day to get it right.

7.  Schemes and dreams are very different.

8.  Solitude is golden.

9.  The perfect ratio: 6 days for work, 1 day for rest.

10. It's easier to step in manure than get it off my boots.

Sure hope you've enjoyed these ten things and, perhaps, some of them might apply to you and your situation. If they do, let me know which and how, 'k?

Blessings ~ chores, nature ~ dawn ~ God ~ churning ~ butter milk ~ butter ~


  1. Number ten, altered a bit . . .
    Easier to step in dog poop than remove it from my shoes.
    Same kind of thing . . .

    What a woman you are . . . Working Thistle Cove and NOW churning butter too . . .

    Whew . . . happy the weekend is behind you!

  2. I'm so glad you wrote those down. I will save them myself, as good reminders of truths I don't want to forget. Thanks, Sandra!

  3. Great post. Wow you worked on all that butter churning. X

  4. That is a lot of butter. Your poor hands must be very sore.
    Love the photo of you and Sadie.

    Like you, I love solitude and the quietness of nature. I am thankful that God is with me through all of the ups and downs.

  5. Wow, so much butter! I know you're glad that is over with. Bless your heart!

    I like what you have learned from Thistle Cove Farm.

    5 & 6 speak to me.

    5. God is stronger than my tears or fears.

    6. Each dawn begins a new day to get it right.

    Thank you for being a wealth of information and inspiration to me.

    Love and hugs ~ FlowerLady

  6. Wow that is a lot of work for butter but I bet it is good:)
    All ten oh yes all ten. HUG B

  7. You are a very busy woman! And I loved to hear what you've learned.

  8. Hmm...Ones that I will admit apply to me are, 3,5,6,10 and maybe 7.

    I love th epic of you an dSadie! Wow, she is a tall dog! Or are you not a tall human? ;-)

  9. that was allot of work churning all that butter-I have churned a few gallons in the past but only a gallon or two at a time-allot work just getting it all washed too-big hugs to you. I can pretty much relate to all 10 on your list

  10. I am truly impressed!

  11. Lovely post! 3,5 & 6 are my favourites... thanks for the gentle reminder. And oh-my-word, that's a whole lot of butter! Hugs xx

  12. Oh my, Sandra, that IS a lot of labor! And I can imagine how your heart sank when you found that last bowl of cream. Good for you, carrying on and working it! I would have been tempted to experiment with how well cream freezes.
    Love your list, and I laughed at #10. I am completely beyond caring about manure on my boots, which are always left at the door. (Unless it's fresh chicken poop which is just unbelievably stinky. Good thing it dries out so fast!) But dog poop is another story. Cannot be ignored, and resolutely clings to every nook and cranny. Piper is usually predictable in where she "goes" which helps a lot with keeping things picked up. But every now and then she likes to surprise me, and I always say "darn" or something like that. (Not very much like that, but you get the idea!)

  13. Oh Sandra, you made me laugh so hard today. I love your ten things - especially the last one! And laughed about your butter. Isn't it funny how things that seem like such a wonderful idea in the beginning sometimes turn out to be the most work you've ever done? LOL Glad it's all done now and that your sense of humor is still intact. Big hugs!

  14. ALL of them apply; they're great!

  15. Butter , everything tastes better with butter or bacon, or both ! That is a lot of work.

    I like # 1 and # 10 best , number 10 can easily be a very visual illustration of so many quagmires we get ourselves into...

    Thanks again for a very uplifting read, and also making me glad I did not have to churn so much butter !

  16. I feel positively lazy when I read this! Bless your heart! I bet that's going to be some good butter.

  17. The last lesson reminds me of politics only it's easier to elect the manure than to get rid of it. [wink]

    I wanna live there. I would stay on that tractor 24/7. ~:)

  18. this one is getting forwarded to soul sisters......

    wish i had been there to help with the butter, buttah !

    Bless you for knowing to share the list.

    Garden & Be Well, XO T

  19. It made me tired just listening to all that butter churning talk! :D
    I love #8. Being a hermit at heart I really crave solitude after a day spent in the noise and activity of a grocery store deli. I love coming home!
    #5 is great! God IS bigger than my tears or fears. Sometimes being alone is kind of scary/lonely, but I'm always reminded that He is with me.
    I also love #4. I sleep with the window open so the crickets can sing me to sleep!
    Thanks for sharing these wonderful things you've learned!

  20. You're a busy gal.
    Love your number 10.

  21. I remember making butter and cottage cheese with mama growing up and her crying (literally) over only getting a tiny bit of cottage cheese after all of the work,...and yes it was worth it....I love living in the country, miss the days of making the butter, cottage cheese, clothes hanging on the lines, canning your veggies. etc
    and yes poop is easier to step in than get off..but then again once those cow piles are dry they become great flying disc (one of the small towns in OK is the world champion cow chip throwing contest) blessings and hope your hands feel better soon

  22. I love them all, each and every one.

  23. Great list of 10! I especially liked number 4 about nature's white noise. We live in a subdivision, but it is a rural area and we have woodlands behind us. So I get to hear a whole symphony when I go to bed at night!

  24. For being symbiotic all. They so describe all that living with and by the land is. It becomes a way of life and one that which I would not know how to do without.

    Good job on the sweet butter. I love it much however on occasion my Wranglers complain at their seams.

  25. Dear Thistle, this is a wonderful post and full of teaching and honor. Big respect and feeling close to you!
    You will always have in your heart and life, what Thistle cove farm has taught to you - even in a future without this farm - so God wants. The farm has made you rich and you can never loose it. The soul and spirit of your farm lives now in your heart. What a present!!!

  26. 6 and 8 resonated with me today.
    I bet hand churned butter tastes much better than store bought. Anything directly from nature and the land is best! Not easiest - but most delicious:)

    Any offers yet on the house/land?

  27. That is a LOT of churning...
    Your list is wonderful for anyone, and number 10 works even as a figure of speech...lots of types of manure in the world lol.

  28. Would love to learn more about churning butter. I've picked it up at farmer's markets once in awhile, and it is so delicious.
    My favourite is number 2. Farm work is hard but it keeps me strong and moving forward. I relate strongly to that one...

  29. That sounds like a churning nightmare, Sandra. Ugh! There's fun ... and there's not fun. Stick to your resolve next time and don't undertake so much :)

    BTW, I clicked on the "perfect diet" post -- it was gone from your blog, but since you loaded it in at some point, it still shows up on my feed reader -- heehee -- I read it aloud to Julia and we both guffawed. Was that really your story, or was that a joke you heard? Because it's a CLASSIC!!

    Of all those 10 good lessons learned, the one that struck me most was, "Schemes and dreams are very different." For some people, it's crucial that they learn to discern the difference and realize when they are merely scheming and destined for failure. Or, it's important to realize when someone in your life is actually scheming, and not dreaming. For me also, solitude is golden. There's a real sermon illustration in #10. And I've also found that I sleep through the night when I'm prepared for whatever is coming the next day -- any kind of storm. Preparation is calming in that way, as is a rational mind. Blessing to you and yours!

  30. Not enough hours in the day are there! Lots of goo dork going on there though. Bless you.

  31. Ha-ha! You make me laugh. All good lessons, even down to the cow patties. :) Best wishes, Tammy

  32. butter...oh yeah...

    How much does that much cream cost?

    I like the list...
    With butter in your belly and prayer on your lips, may you rest sweetly and rise renewed for all those 6 days of chores !


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