Monday, March 31, 2014

It's that time of year

We have been boiling for 3 weekends now. Production has not been fantastic since the weather refuses to cooperate, but we have a new (to us) "arch" and transformed our old shed into a Sugar Shack, that I have yet to take any pictures of. We continue to enjoy family and friends in this sweet success adventure, there would be no production without them. Maple Syrup is a hard earned concoction which takes HOURS to create. But with a hot fire and cold beers the time evaporates and the end result is delicious.

Sugaring arch examples, ours is similar to the left
Side note: It takes 40 gallons of Sap to make 1 gallon of Syrup.
Maple Syrup from Wikipedia
Maple syrup is a syrup usually made from the xylem sap of sugar maple, red maple, or black maple trees, although it can also be made from other maple species. In cold climates, these trees store starch in their trunks and roots before the winter; the starch is then converted to sugar that rises in the sap in the spring. Maple trees can be tapped by boring holes into their trunks and collecting the exuded sap. The sap is processed by heating to evaporate much of the water, leaving the concentrated syrup.
Maple syrup was first collected and used by the indigenous peoples of North America. The practice was adopted by European settlers, who gradually refined production methods. Technological improvements in the 1970s further refined syrup processing. The Canadianprovince of Quebec is by far the largest producer, responsible for about three-quarters of the world's output; Canadian exports of maple syrup exceed C$145 million (approximately US$130.5 million) per year. Vermont is the largest producer in the United States, generating about 5.5 percent of the global supply.
Maple syrup is graded according to the Canada, United States, or Vermont scales based on its density and translucency. Sucrose is the most prevalent sugar in maple syrup. In Canada, syrups must be at least 66 percent sugar and be made exclusively from maple sap to qualify as maple syrup. In the United States, a syrup must be made almost entirely from maple sap to be labelled as "maple".[1]
Maple syrup is often eaten with pancakes, waffles, French toast, or oatmeal and porridge. It is also used as an ingredient in baking, and as a sweetener or flavouring agent. Culinary experts have praised its unique flavour, although the chemistry responsible is not fully understood.[2]

Friday, March 21, 2014

Happy World Down syndrome Day!

Today is the day to celebrate extra good stuff that comes with 3 copies of the 21st chromosome. Perfection is made with 47 chromosomes!
Perfect in every way...

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Welcome Spring??

You wouldn't know today is the first day of Spring, it snowed about 6 inches (up to 14" in higher elevations) last night and we had a two hour delay for school this morning. Count down to warmer days at the beach, though it won't be too warm it's better than what we've got now!

Monday, March 10, 2014


Where are you wonderful Spring? Better yet, where are you 5th season of mud? We still have SO MUCH snow and we are supposed to get more on Wednesday (6"-14"). With that said it's going to make it difficult for the Sappers... The temps have been getting above freezing during the day for the past couple of days with plenty of sunshine, and that means the maple sap is starting to run, not a lot but some. The boys ventured out yesterday to go and check their buckets and see what kind of sweet success they captured. All in all they said they have about 15 gallons of sap (it takes 40 gallons of sap to make one gallon of maple syrup - liquid gold).

Our baby chicks arrived late last Tuesday, we got the call about 8:30 that the postal truck had just arrived at our local sort facility and that we could come and get them. Good thing cause we may have lost more than we did. We had a total of 7 chicks die out of 24. We used a different hatchery this year than last and I think it may be the last year we use this one. 4 were DOA and 2 died the next day, we lost one little fighter yesterday. We thought she was going to make it, but she was so much smaller than the rest and finally stopped eating and drinking. We did get replacements and had to add a few to make up the minimum order. If all 15 of the newest batch (to arrive tomorrow) survive we'll be chicked out and chicken crazy adding to the batch of 28 we already have with our older chickens.

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Talk, Think..., #Write

I went a step further this year with the help of Asa's Para @ school. I had tees made up with the above logo and did a poster with the message to display in the front lobby. BUT wouldn't you know, Asa has had the puke bug all week and is on his 3rd day out of school! Hopefully he feels well enough to go tomorrow and he'll wear his tee then...

About Me

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My name is Jackie and I am a mother, wife, friend, sister, daughter, cousin to many, and a dreamer of sorts. I dream of many things and one is a life full of acceptance, achievement and success for my Super Hero son Asa. He's got extra good stuff that comes with a little thing called Down syndrome. We live in the beautiful state of New Hampshire with our 2 Bulldogs; Rosie, Frankie and 36 chickens.