Father’s Day Feast: Easy Homemade Summer Sausage

summer sausage

Have you ever tried your hand at making summer sausage? Do you have extra ground meat (venison, beef, etc.) on hand in the freezer? If you have a hunter in the family or just need a creative way to make space for summer freezing, you can’t beat this recipe – especially as a delicious, impressive way to spoil Dad on Father’s Day. (Hint: Make it Friday at the latest, as the meat needs 24-48 hours to blend flavors.) Continue reading

How to Make Sauerkraut in a Traditional Crock


Homemade basic sauerkraut used to be a staple in every home.

As a society we have gone outside the home for most of what we need and want in our lives. Food, music, health care, clothing. It’s all acquired from outside of the family and community. Continue reading

Celebrate Ice Cream Month With a Dairy-Free Treat

strawberry ice cream deep roots at home

After our family does something strenuous together here on the farm, we’re all hot, hungry  and need to cool down. My sweet and generous husband wants to go out for great big strawberry ice cream cones or pull a carton of store-bought out of the freezer. It didn’t take long, though, before we all realized this frequent habit wasn’t helping us at all (dairy allergies, bumping up sinus issues, more colds). Continue reading

It’s Dairy Month! Make Some Creamy Avocado Ice Cream


A month before I had our twins, I received doctor’s orders to stay off my feet to delay their entry into this world as long as possible. We asked a young Filipino woman to come and stay with us for a time. She needed help and so did we. Medy taught us how to make an amazing typical Filipino avocado ice cream. Continue reading

Here We Go A-Caroling!

Traditional carols sung as the Mennonites have sung them for centuries. Perfect for a quiet family Christmas gathering. At Lehmans.com or Lehman's in Kidron, Ohio.

Traditional carols sung as the Mennonites have sung them for centuries. Perfect for a quiet family Christmas gathering. At Lehmans.com or Lehman’s in Kidron, Ohio.

Our guest blogger Jacquline hosts the Deep Roots At Home blog too it’s a wonderful compilation of recipes, personal stories and uplifiting content that’s appealing to folks looking to live a traditional lifestyle.

Recently, her daughter chimed in, with a listing of wonderful Christmas music. Now, we have our own Mennonite Hour Singers A Cappella Christmas CD, but this list certainly covers all the bases!

This Christmas, instead of filling your mind with songs like, Rocking Around the Christmas Tree and Grandma Got Run Over By A Reindeer, why not add a touch of nostalgia and joyful toe-tapping music to your festivities? Bring out the epic, the madrigal, the joyful, and the majestic in replacement for the jazzy, shallow Christmas music of today.

Today, I will be sharing a sampler of our favorite Christmas music. The best memories of Christmas with family are those times cuddled on the couch reading the Christmas story, smelling the aromas of turkey and scones in the oven, and listening to the timeless classics that have been sung throughout the ages.

Let All Mortal Flesh Keep Silence“ is one of our family’s favorite Christmas hymns. Written in the 4th century AD, this is an ancient chant of Eucharistic devotion based on words from Habakkuk 2:20, Let all the earth keep silence before him. This song is from O Come All Ye Faithful, a beautiful hardcover book of the stories behind great Christmas carols and an accompanying CD by John MacArthur, Joni Eareckson Tada, and the Wolgemuths.

Growing up, some of my fondest memories are centered around Christmas music by Mannheim Steamroller. Fum, Fum, Fum is one of my favorites, and reminds me of the joys of family celebration, games, laughter, and reunited family members.

My Mother and I agree that our favorite Christmas carol is What Child Is This (also known as Greensleeves), and we love the madrigal experience that Mannheim Steamroller creates on their album A Fresh Aire Christmas.

God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen, written in the mid 1700’s, was mentioned in Charles Dicken’s, A Christmas Carol in 1843. The version we love sung by Joni Eareckson Tada on her album Whiter Than Snow. Scrooge, however, felt differently about the song, according to Dickens:

at the first sound of God bless you, merry gentlemen! May nothing you dismay! Scrooge seized the ruler with such energy of action that the singers fled in terror, leaving the keyhole to the fog and even more congenial frost.”

One snowy December, my Mother and I were driving home after a grocery run. A song on the radio was so beautiful that it took our breath away. We hurried to find paper and pen to jot down the information when it was given at the end of the song: Selah’s O Come, O Come Emmanuel, their album Rose of Bethlehem.

Joy Has Dawned” is a modern Christmas carol by Keith and Kristyn Getty, some of my favorite artists. Their hymns are always so full of truth with a masterful melody and musical quality. Unlike most Christmas albums that are filled with the same Christmas carols just sung in a different way,  Joy! An Irish Christmas has many new Christmas carols written by the Gettys. These are sure to become favorites!

Probably my favorite Christmas album is The Promise by Michael Card. My first memory is of my mother singing his lullabies to me. Michael Card has such a depth of theology in his music, and the accompanying harmonies and rich sounds added together give these pieces almost hymn-like quality.

Check out Jacquline’s blog here http://www.deeprootsathome.com/christmas-memories-in-music-part-2/ and read Christmas Memories in Music 2 for even more great seasonal music.

The Best Power Bars. Ever.

Oven/Sun Food Drying Rack, wooden drying rack

Dry your own fruit for this recipe! Oven/Sun Food Drying Rack is in stock now at Lehmans.com or Lehman’s in Kidron, Ohio.

My husband and I have developed a version of a delicious, healthy protein bar that we absolutely love. (Thank you Lindsay at Passionate Homemaking for the inspiration!) I’ll say that again: it is dee-LISH-us!

Using four super-foods (flax or chia seed, coconut oil, raw honey, and raw almonds) and gluten-free, these bars pack a nutritional punch, and really fill you up between meals.  We wanted have a good snack on hand. Several of our family members were requesting something to give a boost of energy through the day. Continue reading

7 Bee-u-tiful Benefits from Raw Honey

Locally processed and unpasturized, Tonn’s Honey has been a favorite for generations in our area. Now available at Lehmans.com or at Lehman’s in Kidron, Ohio.

When our children were small, we all developed allergies to many things because of exposure to mold. I read that local honey would help with allergies. That was the beginning of our interest in honey and bees.

It’s a simple theory that’s explained in countless books on folk medicine. Honeybees will deposit small amounts of the offending pollen in all that honey they produce. If that honey is made using flower nectar from the allergy sufferer’s locale, chances are pretty good that the pollen in the honey is the same type that’s causing your problem.

Eating honey over time just might help desensitize the body’s immune system. But believers of this theory said the immune system help will result only if the honey is raw and produced locally. Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Reply

Safe And Easy Lacto-Fermented Pickles

The Art of Fermentation is available at Lehman’s.com or Lehman’s in Kidron, Ohio.

I started making after we pinned down the reason we had so many food allergies and yeast (candida) issues. Exposure to black mold (Stachybotris) in our home years before had destroyed gut linings (leaky gut) and messed with the normal digestion and absorption process in some of the family members. Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Reply

Super Easy, Super Tasty Homemade Mayo

Adding rich, homemade mayo to chicken salad.

Years ago when our children were much younger, I decided not to use store-bought mayonnaise anymore. I’d read the labels, and didn’t like what I saw. There are better commercial mayonnaises than others, made with simple ingredients, but most are a combination of bad oils, cheap fillers, and preservatives mixed together to keep forever. Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Reply