Wednesday, April 02, 2008

April, Maples, and something new

I made it home safe and sound the other night even though the road
was a bit mushy and now the snow is starting to melt again.

I thought you guys might to see part of our maple syrup operation
(I make it sound like some big thing, but it isn't really--it's just boiling the sap from the maple trees down until it makes syrup) To start I will show you a picture of two of our big maple trees out front with the sap bags on them.

These trees could have as many as three bags on them. We only have 20 taps and a fair amount of trees that produce, so we weren't able to tap quite as much as we could have. Next year, we will probably double what we have.

We were able to finish up one small batch of maple syrup on Sunday. We got about 5 1/2 quarts of syrup out of 45-50 gallons of sap (sap has to boil down a long time to get to the syrup stage).

This is one of our jars. This year the color is about the prettiest that it can get. Usually the syrup get darker than this.

This is just another picture of that jar, but I just liked the look of it so much I had to try a couple of different shots!

I'll go home and get some more pictures of the process tonight and in the next few days.

Now, for an addition to the story of my going in the ditch on Good Friday.

The reason I might not have been paying attention to the road as well as I should have (hey, I could have about a million of these excuses) was that as soon as I got home Dan and I were to go over to the home of one of his co-workers to look at a stray 9 month old puppy that had come to their place. We have been wanting to get a yellow lab-ish puppy for a while and this winter we had to put down our old Dalmatian, Bombero.

(Poor old bombaroo was 14 1/2 and his poor arthritic legs were getting to be too painful to walk with--he finally came to the point where he wasn't happy to see us anymore and couldn't get up--we will miss him. He was my mom's dog and we got him when I was 14. Dan and I inherited him when we bought my parent's place because he would not have enjoyed moving into the apartment in town)

They had this little yellow girl that had shown up at their place and had been hanging out for over a week, so we went to check her out. She is a cutie pie and our black lab-german shepherd-whoknowswhatelse, Dakota, just loves her. They play a lot and get into trouble as well.
Soooo, this is Montana our new teenage puppy. She enjoys finding dead and decaying animals, catching voles, belly rubs, and rolling in the snow. We are teaching her to stay home and not go up on the road--She already is limping from some kind of a mishap--(when you have 40 acres to run on putting a dog in a kennel just is not the right thing to do (Bombero was never in a kennel and lived to be 14 1/2--that is about the longest dalmatians live-he outlived all of his siblings by several years--One of our other dogs (a little mutt we named Pab) lived to be 16-something about that freedom must be good for a dog).

One last picture from the camera because it just turned out so nice ;o)

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