Friday, August 26, 2016

Free Fish Windsock Printable

The leaves are turning colors! The temperatures are finally headed toward a comfortable range! Could it be that we're returning to autumn!? SO excited!

As promised, I wanted to share with you this free printable for our fish windsocks. The breeze has been just right for these lately! After the little ones saw a few of these in shop windows, they started begging us to get one. But we decided to do one better and make them ourselves! They loved making their fish exactly how they wanted them and even deciding where they wanted all the fins on the sides. All through the day they report on how quickly their fish are “swimming” through the winds!

As for method, simply color in the print out as desired and tape strips of streamer (crepe) paper along the bottom of the uncolored side.  Roll so short ends are just overlapped and tape down.  With a scissors or hole puncher, make two small holes just above each the eyes though which to tie off a length (mine was about 18") of yarn or string.  Then you may choose to tape on extra fins on the sides as my little ones did. 

To open the template to print, click on the photo below:

As I've had so much interest in my other Sunday School printables (see Babel and Daniel), I just couldn't help but think that this could make such a great project for a class, sometime. Although I haven't used it yet, I feel like there are so many stories you could tie in with fish: Jonah, the feeding of the 5,000, fishers of men, creation, the symbol of the early church. We're starting up our regular classes after the summer break, and now I really want to find a way to tie these in! =)

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Homemade Pectin from Apple Scraps!

It has been one year now since we moved down to Oregon and I started up this blog.  Before we really knew anyone or got settled and I would stress about getting acquainted and involved.  One short year later and I often feel too busy and can't seem to arrange time to meet up with all the friends we really want to! Really good "problems" to have; just funny how life can change so quickly!

With these great berry pickers, we had loads of berries, berries for jam!
I remember this season last year, right after we moved into our rental (see that fun story here!) and the excess apples on the old tree behind the house began to fall.  Green and hard, they seemed to have little use.  This year, however, I found a wonderful use for them: Homemade fruit pectin!  Immature apples have a high concentration of natural pectin and are perfect for making your own for canning!  Forager's Harvest has a great description about the method of boiling down immature apples into pectin, but that's just about the gist of it: quarter apples (or even leave whole!), cover with water in a pan and boil it down!  American Prepper's Network and Mother Earth News also explain the same process as well as how to use your new pectin.
Baby Apples and the boiling process

I just used a standard strawberry freezer jam recipe from Land O' Lakes and it worked!  It gelled but I did have to boil it for a minute which the recipe didn't call for.  My only complaint is that it's VERY sweet.  I know that sugar to pectin ratio has to be just right, but my next mission is to find a recipe that comes out a little more fresh tasting and not quite so sugary! 

I just find it so fun to be able to use something that would go to waste to make something I would have to spend money on and use often!  Hope you can find these links to be of use as well!