We have found a spring that tastes nearly as good as the one that flows through my Great Granddaddy's land in Goodlettsville, Tennessee.
My daughter and I loaded up our jugs and headed to Mt. Pleasant early yesterday morning to bottle some of this elixir. A friend of mine who only uses this water to make her breads told me about it and I was happy to know it was only 20 minutes from my house. Folks have been using this spring since way back in 1830 and it has been tested to be very pure. We spent about 30 minutes out there because it was such a peaceful, calming, magical sort of place. Check it out, Carolina friends.
Please remember, if you go there be respectful because it is on church grounds, and leave it better than you found it.
2550 Cold Springs Rd, Concord, NC 28025 You have to park and then walk down to the spring. There are signs to guide you there. It is continuously flowing from a spigot.
We not only have great vendors at the farmers market, we have great customers too!
I set out a jar of ice cold cucumber water and cups for customers to help themselves to in the heat today. Judy Godwin, a local realtor, came by and tasted it, then told me about some tiny, white heirloom cucumbers that she grows . Seeing my interest, she said "I'll run to the house and get you some." She quickly returned to the market with a chilled bag of them. At her urging to taste one, I took a bite... Heavens! They were so good! Those tiny white cucumbers are why saving your heirloom seeds are so important. I have never seen them in the store and never tasted anything comparable. She said that she got the seeds from a man who once lived in a home where the Food Lion in Locust stands now.
So, by Judy visiting today I got a generous gift of cucumbers, an interesting history lesson about the area, and a reminder of why I love raising my family in this great place.
1 tablespoon each celery seed, ground mustard and ground turmeric
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon pepper
In a large container, combine squash, onions, green pepper and salt. Cover and refrigerate overnight. Drain; rinse and drain again.
In a Dutch oven, combine sugar, vinegar and seasonings; bring to a boil. Add squash mixture; return to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer 15 minutes. Remove from heat.
Carefully ladle hot mixture into six hot 1-pint jars, leaving 1/2-in. headspace. Remove air bubbles and adjust headspace, if necessary, by adding hot mixture. Wipe rims. Center lids on jars; screw on bands until fingertip tight.
Place jars into canner with simmering water, ensuring that they are completely covered with water. Bring to a boil; process for 15 minutes. Remove jars and cool. Refrigerate remaining relish for up to 1 week. Yield: 6 pints.
When we met Kate at the farmers market a few weeks ago, I knew instantly that we would be friends. She lives right here in Stanfield and has sheep, chickens, horses and rescue dogs on her farm. She said that she always wanted to learn how to make soap and since we will be getting our own sheep in a few weeks, I told her that Lainey and I were interested in learning how to process a fleece after it had been sheared.
What else could we do but barter our skills!
Yesterday, we went out to her farm and were treated so special. Kate spent 4 whole hours with us. She introduced us to her animals, taught us how to skirt, clean, card and finally spin the wool in to yarn. After that we were treated to a delicious home made peach bread and mint tea from mint that she grows in her yard.
She also sent us home with Wool Dryer Balls that she makes, a tub full of fleece to practice washing and she loaned Lainey a spindle.
Meeting a kindred spirit like her made for such a wonderful afternoon.
Washing the wool
Carding the wool
Mrs. Kate made it look so easy.
Some of the gorgeous yarns Kate has spun and dyed herself. The top three are dyed with Marigold Petals.
Few things can transport us to another time and place like fragrances.
Yesterday, as I made up this batch of grape jelly, I was taken back to the kitchen of my Great Grandmother Lynn. Her house always smelled of green beans cooking in fatback and, for an old southern girl like me, the smell of fatback is always a good memory.
How in the world do grapes and green beans smell alike? I am not sure but in the beginning stages of heating them up, they do! After the juice is extracted, the sweet, grape scent comes forth and it is divine! It nearly didn’t even get made into jelly as we all just wanted to keep it and drink it ourselves.
I look forward to seeing you all at the Farmers Market in Locust today from 2-6. We will have freshly made Grape Jelly, Strawberry Jam, Handcrafted Soap and Art Cards.
It has been said that music is the universal language of mankind, it unites us all. There is so much truth to that statement.
Tonight I had the opportunity to take photos for an extremely talented group of young people, under the tutelage of Ms. Nora Smilovici. Who, by the way just so happens to be an angel walking around in human form. Never have I heard violins played like this and never have I been so moved. You Tube and listen to Mendelssohn’s Violin Concerto in E minor. Now, imagine having a front row seat while it is being performed in front of you...live. I was awestruck, and the fact that an 18 year old girl was playing it with such beautiful movement and emotion brought a huge lump to my throat. I tried to swallow that darn lump but when I did, the tears just spilled over onto my cheeks. I was much relieved to see that I was not the only one wiping away tears. Powerful Stuff!
Neecie Herndon, God bless you for recommending me as a photographer to Ms. Nora. She was such a kind, loving and all around wonderful person. I left that church tonight feeling like I had just had a holy experience.
“Music acts like a magic key, to which the most tightly closed heart opens.” ― Maria Augusta von Trapp