Sapping {Part Two}

Hello, friends!

I hope you are all having a lovely week! Today, I bring you the next part in my tapping trees series. If you missed part one, you can check it out right here.

(This post is shorter than usual to due to some internet problems. That is also why this post is out on Monday instead of Friday. )

Once we tap the trees, we have to do multiple rounds of collecting each week. We usually go up two-three times a week and bring buckets of sap down.

We first run around checking buckets in our main grove and seeing which ones have sap in them. Zekey is over heading over to check buckets in this picture.

Once we check the buckets, we bring new (empty) buckets over and pull the full buckets off the trees.

Then, we pour the sap into an empty bucket.

Once it’s in, we put a lid on it and carry it over to the Ranger. (Before we had our Ranger, we would carry all the buckets down the hill.)

From there, we load up the buckets and repeat with each of the trees.

One evening, we went collecting right as the sun was setting, it was so pretty! I love how the sun is shining through the trees here.

And also, this one! All the pine-trees make it even more beautiful. ❀

Once we’re done with the collecting, we drive all the buckets down in the Ranger and bring them into the mudroom, where we have our Reverse Osmosis (RO) set up. And for this part, we have a video! It’s not the greatest, but you get the picture from watching it. So here it is!

Did you enjoy the video? I hope it was interesting and made sense. =D The reverse osmosis process removes about half of the water from the sap. Typically in reverse osmosis one would want to keep the clear freshwater, but in our case, we want to keep the sweet more concentrated sap instead.

After we run it through the RO, we bring it back outside to the boiler. The sap sits in a large pan (about 3 feet by 3 feet and 12 inches deep) on top of the stove. We boil the sap so it lets out steam for the sugar content to increase and the water content to decrease. It takes about 35-40 gallons of sap to make 1 gallon of syrup.

It takes a LOT of wood, so dad and the twins were splitting it while we were boiling.

We keep adding sap to the boiler as it boils to continue the process of removing water. We boiled for about 13 hours to boil around 80 gallons of sap into about 4 gallons of syrup. (The RO removed the first 80 gallons of water for us.)

And we’re going to stop there! In the next post in this series, I’ll share the bottling and finishing process, as well as the sign-up for the giveaway. Expect that in the next two or three weeks!

What’s your favorite thing to put syrup on? Do you have any questions about the process?

Thank you so much for reading, friends, and have a wonderful day!

A Winter Day in the Woods

Hello, my friends!

On Saturday, my siblings, and I ventured into the woods and played hide and go seek, had a log rolling contest (not the normal log rolling contest – Something a bit different!), wandered around in the woods, enjoyed the spring-like weather in February (although Winter has now returned.) and generally had a blast.

Here are a few photos. Not the prettiest because the woods are dead and brown right now but there are a few fun ones in there.

We’ll start with while we’re walking there. . .

Walking in the woods

I love this one of my youngest brother, Zekey. And the black and white version makes it even cooler in my opinion.

Here is one of the trails, we call Maple Grove because it’s where a lot of our maple trees are at. It all looks kind of dead right now though, in the spring, summer, and fall it’s pretty.

I made Mercy pause and let me get this one of her. . .she wasn’t supposed to stop walking all together though, just stop running, but we’ll go with it. πŸ˜‚

The Log Rolling Contest

Alright, so we had two stacks of wood, one on the top of the hill, and the other at the bottom. Mom had the brilliant idea to have a contest to see which of the kids could get the most to the stack at the bottom. . .

They were trying to get the wood down this path. Note I said they. . .I opted out and just stood at the bottom grabbing random photos of them and dodging pieces of wood and younger siblings.

Onto the actual photos. . .

I’m not exactly sure what happened in this photo. . . I think Jewel slipped but I’m not 100 percent sure. . .anyway, I thought it was kinda cool how her boots stirred up the snow.

I can’t tell and I don’t remember if he fell or if he was crawling on purpose, after all, it was a decently steep hill (despite how the photo made it look) and it was snowy and icy. So he might have fallen or found the sliding was faster but I have no idea.

A random floating chunk of wood. I think one of the kids dropped it on the way down. . .

And the fruit of their labors. . .a neat stack of wood at the bottom of the hill. Overall I think the log rolling went pretty well! :’D

Hide and Go Seek

Next activity! Hide and go seek! Luke started out as the finder so all of scurried to find our hiding spots.

I hid in this mess of tangled vines and such. . .it was poky but thankfully I came out unscathed.

Can you find Mercy? πŸ˜‚

My hiding place for the second round which Jewel and Levi were the seekers for. This spot was better and just hit myself between the trees. Much more comfortable and less poky.

One of Luke hiding by the creek! He was actually better hidden than the photo shows.

Random Tidbits

Just a few random photos I caught from that day.

I love this one so much! The tiny pine cones and the trees in the background, despite the saggy winter evergreen branches it is pretty.

Here’s Luke (Wow, I took a lot of him. . .) climbing up into the tree house up there that they’ve been working on fixing up.

And we’ll end with this one of Mercy swinging! (There was one of me that Mercy took but I can’t find it now. πŸ˜…) I love the shadow on the ground.

Overall, it was a really fun day! I enjoyed having a bit of spring in the middle of February. (And now winter’s back–it’s snowing and cold outside right now.)

Did you enjoy seeing all the photos? What was your favorite? Do you like spending time in the woods?

P.S. As you probably noticed, I’ve been playing with my blog design again because I didn’t like how it looked before. So please bear with me as I change it around and find a style I like. πŸ˜… I’d love to hear your thoughts on how you think it looks too. :’D

𝕋𝕙𝕣𝕖𝕖 π•‹π•šπ•‘π•€ π• π•Ÿ 𝕙𝕠𝕨 π•₯𝕠 𝕝𝕠𝕧𝕖 π•ͺ𝕠𝕦𝕣 π•€π•šπ•“π•π•šπ•Ÿπ•˜π•€ π•“𝕖π•₯π•₯𝕖𝕣

Loving your siblings is hard sometimes. They are often loud, messy, and wild when you just want some peace. I completely understand how difficult it can be to love your siblings all the time because I have the same problem! Here are a few tips I have learned over the years of being a sibling.

𝔹𝕖 ℙ𝕖𝕒𝕔𝕖𝕗𝕦𝕝

“Blessed are the peacemakers for they shall be called the children of God.” Matthew 5:9

Being peaceful is hard. Especially when our siblings are being annoying or loud. God calls us to be peaceful. A few ideas on how you can be peaceful:

  • Pray- Ask God to help you be peaceful with your siblings.
  • Take a deep breath.
  • Step away from the craziness and relax for a moment.

𝔹𝕖 π•‚π•šπ•Ÿπ••

“Be ye kind, one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as Christ hath forgiven you.” Ephesians 4:32

Sometimes being kind and gentle to your siblings is the hardest thing to do. They are always getting on your nerves, bothering you, and you just have to snap at them and tell them to go away. However, God call us to be kind:

  • Once again, pray. Take a second to talk to God and ask for help.
  • Count to ten before you speak and ask yourself, is what I am going to say kind? Is it going to uplift them? Or tear them down?
  • Ask youself, What would Jesus do?

π”½π• π•£π•˜π•šπ•§π•–

 Forbearing one another, and forgiving one another, if any man have a quarrel against any: even as Christ forgave you, so also do ye.”

Forgiving is a key point to loving your siblings. God tells us to forgive. Yes, sometimes we lose our patience with them. And they do annoying and bothersome things. The beautiful thing about this is that God forgives us always and he will always help us forgive our siblings!

  • Pray- Ask for forgiviness for your part in the situation
  • Pray- Ask God to help you forgive your sibling even if they are not sorry.
  • Do something nice for your sibling- to show them everything is okay

π•€π•Ÿ β„‚π• π•Ÿπ•”π•π•¦π•€π•šπ• π•Ÿ

Siblings can be hard to love but they can also be a blessing. I always try to remember, my siblings, no matter what age they are, have feelings. They care about me! And your siblings have feelings and care about you! More than we can realize sometimes.

These are the three things I think every sibling, young or old, needs to have. Peace, Kindness, and Forgiveness.

I hope this article has given you ways to love your siblings better. I will pray for you to get along with your siblings and I hope you pray for me.

Until next time,