Counting my blessings and at every corner I see more to be thankful for. That is actually how I started writing this little news letter. I was challenged with 30 days of thankfulness before Thanksgiving. It so affected me that it continued after Thanksgiving. Eventually it turned into more like a news letter of our simple life here on the farm.  

The garden is cleared and ready for the tiller. Duane has cleaned up the bulk of the leaves off the stone out back and has put a healthy deposit on the garden to help make a rich dark soil. When the trees finish dropping them hopefully we will not have snow to fight to get them up and out of the area. On Friday the wind was out of the south west and blew a lot of the leaves across the drive and out across the conservation ground, A good place for them to spend the winter. There is still so much to get done. I harvested the last of the parsley, amaranth and some of the sorghum to collect the grain and grind it. I want to try using it in a flat bread to see how it tastes and if it might be one of those grains that do not spike Duane’s sugar levels. I still have 3 bushels of soup beans to shell and hopefully soon I will get inspired to start working on them again

I did a little work in the garden this week and put another planting of salad greens in the green house but other than that I kind of took it easy and did some baking. Our church was having a Christmas market and I was asked to head up the craft table. I made Gailyn Arthur’s gingerbread recipe and made over a hundred gingerbread men. I sat up the table with all kinds of things to decorate them with. It was so much fun watching the ladies decorate them and catching up with friends as they worked. My favorite little decorator was a little boy who attended. He was so excited how his cookies turned out. My heart smiled remembering my beautiful friend Gailyn. She is one of those people who know how to make you smile. She could speak volumes with few words and more times than not she would have you in stitches of laughter at life’s little mishaps. What a joy it was to make those cookies and remember her.

I have also been spending time spinning and crocheting. I am working on a gift. If I don’t get it done for Christmas then it will just have to be an I love you gift later.

I wanted to find another recipe for butternut squash and this week I found a winner. It will have to be a meal we have when Duane is cutting wood or something else active. I worked on a recipe for a low fat vegan pasta sauce make with any winter squash or pumpkin.

Roasted Butternut Pasta Sauce.

20 to 25 cups of winter squash or pumpkin cut in ½ to 1 inch pieces

4 cloves minced garlic

3 onions coarsely chopped

3 Tablespoons Italian seasoning

2 teaspoons salt

¾ teaspoon nutmeg

¾ teaspoon thyme

2 tablespoons almond or cashew butter

Put all ingredients except almond butter in a large roaster and bake on 375 for an hour to 1 ½ hours, until squash is tender. Remove from oven and add the almond butter. Puree this combination with an emersion blender until smooth and creamy. Put in 1 pint jars and can on 10 lbs pressure for 1 hour.

Put a 2 quart sauce pan of salt water on to boil, drain and rinse 1 can chick peas, slice 1 lb mushrooms and chop 1 bundle of asparagus in 1 inch pieces. In a bowel big enough to hold the above veggies combine 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar, ½ tablespoon tamari, 1 teaspoon dijon mustard, ¼ teaspoon smoked paprika, ¼ teaspoon nutmeg, ¼ teaspoon thyme and a small amount of fresh ground black pepper. Once mixed thoroughly toss veggies with this.  Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper and spread veggies out on the cookie sheet and broil for 10 to 15 minutes until veggies are hot through and slightly browned.  

When water comes to a boil put ½ pound of angel hair pasta in the boiling water. Cook to al dente. When Pasta is done drain holding back a half cup or so in case you need it to thin your sauce. Mix veggies with sauce. Put pasta on a plate and then pour sauce and veggies over the pasta or toss in a bowel with pasta and serve.

I am also including a photo of Gailyn’s Gingerbread recipe. They are not low fat vegan but they are wonderful. I made mine with black strap molasses and made butter cream frosting to decorate them. Me and several of the ladies who decorated them were thankful for our church’s prison ministry team who takes cookies to the inmates at our local jails. We could decorate them but did not have to eat them.

Today was the first day of deer hunting season so you know where Mr. Wade was today. We don’t eat the meat, but there is always a family in need to give it to. In my absence he also checked many things off our “to do list”. Tonight as we finish off our supper I am looking forward to tomorrow and time back worshipping with our church family and a quiet day relaxing at home. God is good and we are blessed here on the Wade Homestead.