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Maple syrup!

This winter has felt incredibly hard due to the weeks upon weeks of frigid temperatures, snow, and ice. Then, it seemed like one day, we were sledding and building snowmen and the next, a strong breeze blew in springtime.

Zoey’s hair has a mind of its own in the wind.
We had flowers…
Almost stepped on a trio of crocuses (does that make it croci…?) in the middle of the grass.

With the warming temperatures, that also means it’s officially the start of maple syrup season. Yippee! Not only will we get a fresh batch of syrup but it also means spring really is around the corner.

How many taps on maple trees can you see?

Some nights, we are so busy with dinner and milking the cows and doing the rest of our chores that we don’t have time to get it all done before the sun goes down. Solution? Flashlights.


No one EVER cries when we tell them we’re going to work if they get to hold their own flashlight.


We took advantage of one particularly warm night to catch up on the sap collecting. Ironically enough, for maple sap to really flow well, it has to be below freezing at night and above freezing during the day–we need both winter and spring temperatures to really harvest our fill.

Zoey keeping track of the buckets of syrup in the cart.

A friend gave us a modified shopping cart that’s got bike wheels and a handle for the very purpose of collecting sap. So, instead of having to haul back five-gallon buckets full of sap to the house (which mind you, are very heavy), we can put them in the cart and haul away.

The pot on the right is already starting to turn a beautiful caramel color.
Then, it’s a matter of filtering and boiling everything down until it’s juuuuuuust right. Of course, that means lots of steam and our poor microwave had a hard time keeping up with venting (I’m looking at you, Samsung), so we got a fan to help circulate the air and open the window. Works like a charm.
Except when the kids assume I’ve set the fan up for them to stand in front of and make funny voices.
So, while we’re not really sad to say goodbye to winter, we want it to hang out for a tad longer, at least until we have our maple syrup fill to last us the year!

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True stories of raising children, remodeling, braving the elements and plotting out life, all while living on a humble acreage in central Indiana.

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