Saturday, December 27, 2008

Plumbing the vacation away...

Spent the day today replumbing the house.
My sister is remodeling our upstairs bathroom as a Christmas gift.
She tore out lots of lathwork and the toilet and sink yesterday and hauled it all to our dumpster.
(We have a nice roll-off dumpster sitting in the front yard)
Gonna bust up the cast iron tub in place with a sledge hammer.
Anyway, we had to cut out the old Iron pipes and run new plastic everywhere.
I kind of like it because it's like playing with tinker toys, but I'm also stressed hoping it won't leak all over.
So we now have the water back on with shut off valves up to the upstairs run.
Lots of fun cutting the old Iron pipe out with a sawzall. (not really)
When we had done stuff in the past we had just run plastic off of the old iron near where we were working.
We had all kinds of black iron coming out of the faucets, I think it was a result of hooking the softener up to the old iron pipe and the salt eating away at the build up and finally sending it out the faucets. (it was getting to be a real mess up in the bathroom we are re-doing)
Now the only Iron is about three feet of our plumbing tree where our softener is hooked in.(only 5 years old)
I have copper where the hot water systems are tied together.(2 years)
Doesn't seem to any problems so far.

Still clinging to my God and my guns,

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Not happy holidays

Merry Christmas!!!
We celebrate the birth of a savior today!!
May you and yours have a blessed Christmas.


Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Middle age has snuck up on me

I was in Walmart on Saturday and decided to test my blood pressure in the machine.
It read 186/104 !!!!!
I was like wow!!!!!!
So I made a doctors appointment and got it tested today.
190/110 doctor sent me home with some pills to take and an order for blood work and another appointment for two weeks down the road.
I didn't worry about this kind of stuff when I was younger but I guess I have officially arrived at middle age.

Still clinging to my God and my guns,

Monday, December 22, 2008

Yes I'm a failure...

We are out of wood!!.
It was -1 last night the house got down to 58.
My last sharp chain was messed up and would not hardly cut the big logs we have drug up to the house.
I asked dad if he would come and cut them with his big Jonsered saw.
He came and cut 3 or 4 pieces and his saw quit running.
So we will be on propane by the morning.
Just can't keep up with the wood demand of this furnace doing it all by myself.
I do have five or six 10-20 inch x 10-12 feet long logs up at the house but no way to cut them until tomorrow.
So much for being prepared..... But I guess I do have 400 gallons of propane sitting there so it's not too bad.

Still clinging to my God and my guns

Sunday, December 21, 2008

How do you see Jesus?

This time of year many people forget what the season is about.
Yes Jesus probably wasn't born on December 25 but it is the day we celebrate it.
Many will try to say it is just a pagan holiday the Christians took over. This may or may not be true, but Jesus Christ is why we celebrate it today. You will hear constant reminders that "He is the reason for the season" and these are well and good. The problem starts when the baby Jesus is all that people see. Jesus Christ was much more than a cute little baby born of a virgin all those years ago. You can't leave Him in that manger.

Lets look at someone else who tried to fit Jesus into a category. Look at John chapter 4 it tells the story of Jesus' encounter with the Samaritan woman at the well.

1The Pharisees heard that Jesus was gaining and baptizing more disciples than John, 2although in fact it was not Jesus who baptized, but his disciples. 3When the Lord learned of this, he left Judea and went back once more to Galilee.

4Now he had to go through Samaria. 5So he came to a town in Samaria called Sychar, near the plot of ground Jacob had given to his son Joseph. 6Jacob's well was there, and Jesus, tired as he was from the journey, sat down by the well. It was about the sixth hour.

7When a Samaritan woman came to draw water, Jesus said to her, "Will you give me a drink?" 8(His disciples had gone into the town to buy food.)

Samaritans were half breeds, they were the result of intermarriage of Jews and Babylonian conquers. It was the sixth hour meaning noon, the heat of the day this woman was an outcast herself since the other women would come to draw water when it was cool.

The first impression this woman has of Jesus is A Jewish man sitting by the well, then he speaks the her! This just didn't happen, Men did not speak to women in public let alone a Jewish man speak to a Samaritan woman. She even states her surprise.

9The Samaritan woman said to him, "You are a Jew and I am a Samaritan woman. How can you ask me for a drink?" (For Jews do not associate with Samaritans)

Then Jesus really piqued her curiosity.
10Jesus answered her, "If you knew the gift of God and who it is that asks you for a drink, you would have asked him and he would have given you living water."

11"Sir," the woman said, "you have nothing to draw with and the well is deep. Where can you get this living water? 12Are you greater than our father Jacob, who gave us the well and drank from it himself, as did also his sons and his flocks and herds?"

13Jesus answered, "Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again, 14but whoever drinks the water I give him will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life."

15The woman said to him, "Sir, give me this water so that I won't get thirsty and have to keep coming here to draw water."

Jesus obviously was speaking of the Holy Spirit when he mentioned living water, but the woman thought he was talking about regular water and thought....This guy is an INTERESTING MAN

Many people today see Jesus as a sort of fist century Will Rodgers.... -A good story teller, never met a man he didn't like, a good teacher running around telling jokes and doing tricks with bread and fish. Without the living water of the Holy Spirit many will not see.

16He told her, "Go, call your husband and come back."

17"I have no husband," she replied.

Jesus said to her, "You are right when you say you have no husband. 18The fact is, you have had five husbands, and the man you now have is not your husband. What you have just said is quite true."

19"Sir," the woman said, "I can see that you are a prophet. 20Our fathers worshiped on this mountain, but you Jews claim that the place where we must worship is in Jerusalem."

Here the woman gets a different view she never met him but he knows her thoughts so she puts on a religious face. She sees him as a Prophet A religious person so she asks a religious question to prove she is religious too.

Many today see Jesus as a religious leader, and they act religious around him while they are in church but they leave it at the door. Others will take him saying he taught good religious stuff but he was only a man.

21Jesus declared, "Believe me, woman, a time is coming when you will worship the Father neither on this mountain nor in Jerusalem. 22You Samaritans worship what you do not know; we worship what we do know, for salvation is from the Jews. 23Yet a time is coming and has now come when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for they are the kind of worshipers the Father seeks. 24God is spirit, and his worshipers must worship in spirit and in truth."

25The woman said, "I know that Messiah" (called Christ) "is coming. When he comes, he will explain everything to us."

26Then Jesus declared, "I who speak to you am he."

Here we see Jesus as He truly is Messiah

Some will say Christ never claimed to be the messiah but here we see the falicy of that belief.

God became a man and for 33 years he walked the earth showing us the way. Our sins nailed him to a cross and shed his blood. Hebrews 9:22b "without the shedding of blood there is no remission" He arose on the third day and waits to return.

So how do you see Jesus?

A baby in a manger?

An interesting man?

A religious man?

Or the Messiah, King of kings and Lord of lords?

Still clinging to my God and my guns,


Sunday, December 14, 2008

How to process a deer part 3 cutting and packaging

This is the final part of how to butcher your deer.

When you have the meat off of the bones it is time to cut and package it.
First take your two backstraps and cut off the membrane and dried parts so you have clean meat to cut.

Like this:

After it is cleaned of membrane I cut the backstraps into medallions.
On a larger animal you can get some excellent steaks from this filet mignon.

cut medallions like this:

Next grab one of the muscle groups you have boned out and start to clean the membrane, fat and gristle off.

Until you get something like this nice roast.

You can also cut this into steak if you prefer.
Always cut meat across the grain if you are making steaks.

Like this:

Continue on with all muscle groups.
Odd pieces of good meat can be made into stir fry or stew meat.
You can also use any of the meat you would use for steak or roast.

Cut it in pieces like this:

After you have all the "good" meat cut it's time for burger.
You can turn the whole thing into burger if you like.
Start by cutting the good meat away from tendons and membrane.

Like this:

Then get your bones and clean them up of all the meat you can cut off.
When I was young this was the job for us kids. We had to clean up all the bones and toss the meat in the burger cooler.

still some meat:

Some here on the carcass also.

We run it through the meat grinder at least twice.
Once very course and the second time on the middle setting.
We add no fat or suet to the meat. We won't be making hamburgers from it so when you brown it just add a little water or oil to keep it from sticking.

Here is Tanya grinding burger:
(looks thrilled I know)

When you are done cutting it is time to wrap.
If you want it to last a long time in your freezer wrap it in plastic wrap before putting it in your freezer paper.
I ate some elk that was wrapped this way that was over 5 years old and wasn't freezer burnt. (I wouldn't make a habit of it though)
Since this was a tiny deer and it will get eaten quickly we skipped the plastic and just used freezer paper.
The meat goes against the shiny side of the paper.

Like this:

Then just wrap it up and make sure and write the date and what type of meat is in the package.

Once we mistakenly cooked some loin in the crockpot and it turned to mush.

This wraps up how I butcher a deer, or an elk for that matter.
It may not be the best way but it's how I have come to do it.

Still clinging to my God and my guns

How to process a deer Part 2 deboning

This is part 2 of 3 of how to butcher your deer

After your deer is skinned it can be aged or butchered right away.
You will want to cut the internal tenderloins out before aging since they tend to dry out and then are no good.
They are tiny on this little deer almost not worth messing with.

I am pointing to them here:

After the tenderloins I start on the backstraps. This is the best part of the deer.
Take your knife and make a cut straight in on both sides of the backbone.
From the rear hips to the front shoulder/ neck area. Next cut in from the side, right along the top of the ribs and remove the backstrap.

Like this:

Repeat on the other side and you will end up with two pieces of meat like these.

MMMM filet mignon.....

Next it's time to start on the front shoulder. I grab the leg and pull it away from the body and start cutting at the thin meat and fat holding it on.

Like this:

It should come off in your hand with ease.
Repeat on the other side and you are ready to take them in and bone them.

Start by cutting the meat off the bones, keeping the muscle groups together.

Like this:

And this:

Until you end up like this.

Now it's time to get the rear quarters.
Take your knife and cut around the hip by the pelvis.
You can see I left a little too much meat on the carcass.

Like this:

Keep working your knife around the joint until it comes free.

Here is the inside view.

Then we take the rear quarters in and debone them like the front ones.

Like this:

A lot more meat on a rear quarter than on a front.

After you have it deboned you are ready to cut and package.
I will go over that in part 3

As I said this is how I was taught and how I've done it most of my years.
I don't like ribs and have never bothered with them on a deer or elk.
Some folks really like them but I'm not the one to ask about them.

Still clinging to my God and my guns

Friday, December 12, 2008

How to process a deer Part 1 Skinning

This is part 1 of 3 of how to butcher your deer.

I am processing my deer and will share the steps I take when I Butcher my own.
Normally it is best to hang and skin your deer while it is still warm. The meat will taste better and it will cool faster. This year I had too much wood to cut that day so I just propped it open with a stick so it would cool and then hung it in the garage. When I was younger we always left the hide on until it was time to butcher. It takes a lot longer to skin it when it's cold or frozen, but it is not the end of the world if you don't get it skinned right away.

To start the skinning process cut around the hind leg above the knee, then take the tip of your knife and split the skin down towards the tail.

Like this...

Do that on both rear legs and skin your way to the tail and cut through it with your knife.

Like this...

My knife is laying right below the severed tail bone. (the knife is a K-Bar 1100 I picked up at a flea market this summer for $2.50, I really like the carbon blades)
Once you have gotten through the tail bone you can probably pull the hide down to the front legs if the deer is still warm. My deer is mostly frozen so I had to help it along with the knife.

Grab the hide and pull down take your knife and make cuts along where the membrane is clinging to the hide .

Like this...

And this...

Continue skinning down the front legs until you get to the joint. I use pruning shears to cut off the leg and leave it attached to the hide.

Like this...

Do that to both sides and then continue all the way down to the neck. I use a bow saw to remove the head and the hide all in one piece.

Like this...

It should now look something like this...

But whats this????
There's hair all over my meat!!!

Never fear!
Propane torch to the rescue!!

Lightly go over the whole deer with the torch and singe off all the stray hairs.

Now you are ready to start cutting or letting it hang to age.

Still clinging to my God and my guns

Thursday, December 11, 2008

A couple things

First I would like to touch on the post I did on the government taking your food. HERE
The local media has finally picked it up sort of. It is on the plain dealer's blog site. The Lorain S.O. spokesman tries to defend the raid. Read it here LINK

Kinda funny....
First he says "We don't even have semiautomatic weapons," he said.
What S.O. does not own semi auto weapons?? Are we that stupid?

"Resendez said four deputies conducted the search over three or four hours -- not the nine"
Problem is the police report provided lists 11 deputies who took part.
Yes I trust the government.........(I need a rolly eyes)

The really good stuff is reading the comments at the bottom.
There are some good freedom loving folks who stand up for individual freedoms, then there are the socialist collective new world order sheep who keep bleating for the government to protect them.
I'll leave you with that for now.

The other literally cool thing going on is my furnace died last night.
Not the wood furnace but the blower on the gas furnace that moves the hot air for the wood furnace.
I noticed getting ready for bed last night it was cooler than normal and checking the thermostat confirmed it was below the setting.

I went down in the basement and checked the breaker and it was OK so I pulled the cover off of the furnace and I hear the motor clicking when I put in the safety button. If I throw the switch on the side of it I hear the motor humming but nothing else.

This is an area (among others) that I am a complete idiot. I put in a call to the plumbing and heating place and told them I could wait till morning. More $$$ out the door. The hot water is still hot since the wood furnace is still going so I had a hot shower and where the piping runs under the floor it is warm. So to my surprise it only fell to 59 in here so far.

Still clinging to my God and my guns

Saturday, December 6, 2008

The Lord hath provided meat!!

Went out and did a walk through of the woods this morning.
I was as much looking for trespassers as I was hunting. I have two days during muzzle loading season already scheduled off at work. But I give it a little effort during regular gun season and do a slow stalk through the woods. Many times I will find a deer bedded and be able to get a shot.

I had already snuck through the woods and was on my way back along the front edge just inside the trees when up jumps this little button buck. I could tell right away it was wounded. You can see someone shot it in the left rear leg. I was able to walk up to it and put it out of it's misery. So God in his infinite wisdom sent a deer I could actually hit and gave us many good meals to come. He knew normally I would let a little deer like this go, I'm sure he knows something I don't and am grateful for the meat.

In the picture you can see my bowie knife. I got it for $2 at a flea market two summers ago. It is Pakistani stainless that is not the greatest quality but it worked just great on the little buck. The guard has a sharp spot on it that cut my hand a little and I will take a file to it before I use it again. I have never used a knife this big before but once I got the hang of it the size was a real plus in how fast I got the job done. It was a little tight in the chest cavity cutting things loose but worked out well. I had it gutted and in the truck in less than 10 minutes.

Now I'm done hunting and need to go get more wood. I'm only allowed one deer up in this part of the state.
Maybe I'll get some writing done with my two vacation days after Christmas.

Still clinging to my God and my guns

Friday, December 5, 2008

Think the government won't take your food???


You may or may not of seen the news about manna food co-op here in Ohio.
I encourage you to read this report on the link.

The Jack Booted Thugs (JBT's) are only going to increase their activities under the new regime in washington. What will you do if the JBT's kick in your door and herd your family into your livingroom and proceed to remove your stored up food? Plus all your other things you may need to survive?

Another reason to control as much of your own food as possible.

Still clinging to my God and my guns

Thursday, December 4, 2008

The last two weeks have been a challenge

On an up note we will hit 2500 page views today!!!!

It started two weeks ago when I fell will trying to catch the cat as it ran up the stairs.
I hit the elbow that has been giving me trouble. I don't know what the problem is with it but it aches and is warm.
The fall has healed. (the trouble with the elbow preceded the fall)
After that dad came over and we cut wood. We pulled up 13 logs with the tractor, problem is I have burnt most of them. LOL
Here they are after I cut most of them into lengths.

Picture of the Ford 9N dad restored for me. It's what I use for most of my farm work.

The next week was Thanksgiving so I didn't get any wood cut.

Friday I had the kids help me pick the last of the corn. They didn't want to help but I kept telling them that this is what families do, they work together. They did as much as 7,5 and 3 yo kids could do.

Saturday we had "Thanksmas" most of my cousins and there kids came over to my Grandma's house and we had a second Thanksgiving. I went out in the woods early and cut a load of wood that morning (good thing)

Monday rolled around and I tweeked my back while I was loading the furnace. Now I have a messed up elbow and a sore back. Going to be interesting cutting wood this weekend.

Here is the furnace with the wind break we built behind it.

I'm done with my little pity party now....

Still clinging to my God and my guns

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

so you want to buy your chicken at the store?!?

Tyson injects eggs with antibiotics, then claims that the chickens are raised without them.
They also said it is an indusry wide practice. Read about it here......LINK

Tanya and I have been talking about here allergies.
She is allergic to both corn and soy and it seem there are quite a few people who have this problem. Corn and soy or some dirivative of them are in almost everything.

We have been discussing making our homestead corn and soy free.
It is possible to raise animals without either. It will just take a more careful approach to planning. Europe survived thousands of years before explorers brought back either maize or soya. I feel we can too.

It is kind of strange concidering all our rented land is rotated between corn and soybeans.
But I think it is doable.
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