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One of the most treasured items that I have from my childhood is my grandma Patty’s pasta maker.  I was feeling very sentimental during the holiday season and really missing the traditions of my younger years and spent quite a bit of time thinking about memories made with my aunts, uncles, grandparents, and cousins.  All of the reminiscings made me think about that old pasta maker.  So I dug it out and announced to the girls that we were going to have some Christmas Eve fun!

When we gathered at our family Christmases when I was a kid we would traditionally have chicken noodle soup or chili.  I decided we would continue this tradition in our home, but that we would make our own noodles.  We had chicken leftover from a whole chicken that we had roasted and homemade noodles would be the perfect addition to our homegrown chicken for a Christmas dinner of homemade chicken noodle soup.

The girls were excited to get to use the pasta maker and I enjoyed showing them Grandma’s signature on the bottom and telling them how I used to run slices of bread through it just for fun.  I have seen grandma’s signature on it several times, but this time it made me wonder why she had it labeled.  Did she take it to a large gathering where they made lots of noodles? Maybe a church or family gathering?  Not sure, but it did make me wonder.

The girls quickly got in the groove of kneading together our ingredients. My job was to roll the sheets of dough out and then they took turns running the dough through the machine and then laying the noodles on the table to dry.  I won’t deny that there were a few arguments over whose turn it was to run the crank on the machine and a bossy older sister telling a younger sister that she wasn’t laying the noodles out correctly, but even with that we still had lots of fun and made some memories. 

I have included the recipe that we used for our homemade egg noodles here.  We decided to make a double batch so we would have some extras for beef and noodles sometime this winter. Do you have any special meal traditions around the holidays?  Have you ever ran a pasta maker?

Last week we were blessed to have some visitors come to the farm! They couldn’t have come at a more perfect time because it was “birth” day for Charlotte’s fourth litter! 

My friend, Lisa, works at NIVC Services, Inc. and had contacted me a few weeks ago to see if she could bring some clients for a tour! Lisa has the fabulous job of getting to do all sorts of fantastic activities with clients and is a top-notch chicken wrangler! NIVC Services, Inc. is a not-for-profit organization providing employment training and support to people with disabilities. 

From the NIVC Services website “Activities Group, our clients have opportunities to have rich experiences and active lives by meeting friends, building relationships, and participating in their communities. Rather than staying home watching TV on their days off work, Joblink Activities clients can choose opportunities to go out with a group of friends for a couple of hours or a full day. With plenty of suggestions from clients, each month is packed with fun and interesting things to do.”

Our guests from NIVC Services, Inc. had chosen one of their activities to be touring a farm so you can imagine my response when Lisa asked, I couldn’t have been more excited and knew just the week they needed to come based on when I knew we should be having baby pigs! 

Waiting to catch a piglet entering the world.

Although Charlotte didn’t actually deliver a piglet while we were impatiently waiting she delivered one while we were out of the barn looking at the calves so our guests did get to see a brand new piglet.

We wandered around the farm, talked about what pigs and cattle eat, looked at tractors, gave a few pats to Mouse the calf, looked at field corn and most got to pet Moose the chicken. We looked at straw and hay and discussed how straw and corn stalks become like a big bed for the animals. It was a blast!

Looking at straw

It absolutely made my morning to share what I love with this group that are all doing great things! I just know it based on their smiles and their fabulous questions. I can’t wait until Lisa calls for another visit! 

Our group picture, minus the chicken wrangler, she also served as the photographer. 😉

Have you been on a farm tour or given a farm tour?

From the gravel road,

Jen

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