APPLE CIDER! Fresh from the Farm . . .

APPLE CIDER! Fresh From the Farm . . .

Cover Photo

“As an apple tree among the trees of the forest, so is my beloved among the young men. With great delight I sat in his shadow, and his fruit was sweet to my taste.” – Song of Solomon 2:3

I LIKE my husband; I don’t just love him. I think he is hilarious, clever, and really cool. On December 31, 2015 we will have been together 13 years, and I’ve never been bored with him once. Just when I think I have him figured out, I don’t. He is constantly changing in his interests, knowledge, and tastes. He allows me to see the world differently, and everything seems accessible when I’m with him.

When we were dating I found myself daydreaming of him a lot, like all day. There was a time we missed each other so much we agreed to meet at a closed ice cream shop at midnight just to sit together for an hour. Imagine yourself hiking through the thick trees in the woods, stepping over the scratchy undergrowth on the trail, until you come to an opening in the tree canopy where stands a luscious fruit tree in the middle of nowhere. He is my “apple tree among the trees of the forest”. He stands out differently, has something to offer nobody else can, and the only one I want. His shadow protects me and his fruit provides for me.

Nate and I first met in our college chemistry class; yes, for real. I was immediately drawn to him by his great smile. And when class ended, naturally, I appeared on his door step to remind him he had forgotten to ask me out! He was very grateful for the reminder. 🙂 And we’ve been together ever since.

But of course this post isn’t about Nate, neither is the verse above about any boyfriend. Like everything in the Bible, this verse is about Christ. Do you think about Christ like the writer in Song of Solomon? Do you meditate on His goodness and provision? Is He your “apple tree” compared to what the world has to offer? Even if you are a seasoned Christian, sometimes the answer is “no”.

We get sucked into the distractions of life and can feel our relationship with God drifting further away. Maybe you never felt that way or don’t understand how such sensual words can be spoken about the God of the Bible (that used to be me, too). You are thankful that’s He’s your Savior, but you’ve never known Him as the Lover of your soul. So how do you get that relationship with Christ?

Go back to chemistry class . . . notice Him. Find out His name and how He got it. Appear on His doorstep so He can spend time with you. Offer to meet in the middle of the night. Meet with His family (aka other Christians). Study Him and meditate on His goodness and provision. He already knows you, but there is so much to learn about Him! Jesus NEVER gets boring, EVER! And if you find that He has, it’s because you’ve forgotten to ask Him out!

“Anyone who does not love does not know God, because God is love.” – 1 John 4:8, ESV

If you know God, you will love God. And LIKE Him!! There is so much to learn about what and how He thinks. Find out what God thinks about you and what He wants from your life.  Date Christ, get to know Him, and you may find yourself daydreaming about how amazing He is. Because if you are a Christian, Christ is your husband.

“ . . . as the bridegroom rejoices over the bride, so shall your God rejoice over you.” –Isaiah 62:5, ESV

Spend time in prayer (and not just asking for things that you want, but thanking God for who He is). Btw, you can pray while you do almost anything. If you really can’t read the Bible daily, consider listening to sermons in your car, at work, or while you make dinner (I’m partial to Pastor Matt Chandler; downloadable). Surround yourself with people who stir your affection for God, not do the opposite by bringing you down (i.e. don’t be friends with people who hate your husband). Attend a weekly Bible study  with people who will hold you accountable(Sunday mornings are just not enough to satiate). I personally meet with a friend at 5:15am weekly for Bible memorization, prayer, and accountability (yep, if early works than just do it!). If you do have time to read, start a book about something you have always wanted to learn about God. I’m currently reading The Story of Christian Theology. And it is SO GOOD! I can’t NOT talk about it with people; Christ is too amazing!

So if you have found your marriage to Christ is getting dull, just go back to the beginning. Like any marriage, it takes time and effort, but He is the “apple tree among the trees of the forest.” Take delight in His shadow and provision. Not only will his fruit leave you satisfied, but it’s so, so sweet.

APPLE CIDER TIME!

My brother, Chad, invited Nate and I with some friends to make apple cider out at the farm. He borrowed an apple press for the first time, so we figured this out as we went along. 

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Picking the apples out at the farm . . .

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Washing the apples in a giant tub, we picked all kinds . . . red, green, sweet, tart . . .  don’t ask me what kind, these trees have been here before I was born!

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Kelsey and her sister picking apples from the skid loader bucket . . .

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No need for ladders, kids, this is how it’s done on the farm . . . Lane and Jack think it’s pretty cool to lift their mom and aunt with hydraulics!

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Everyone helps! Chad still has some construction going on out there, but more on that later!

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Ryan puts the apples into the press . . . you can see the apprehension on both their faces. I imagine they were getting sprayed with juice.

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Chad makes sure they stay in there . . .

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The press is grinding them up on the top.

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And squeezing them in the middle . . .

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And collecting the juice on the bottom.

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The cider is poured through a colander to catch any apple debris.

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Everyone is pretty excited for the first jug!

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Ryan and Nate are filtering it one more time before it goes into the jug, while Jack is learning the ways of men.

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And this is what is leftover from the apple press. The boys kept calling them apple cakes, and had a blast jumping and smashing.

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We ran out of jugs, but Jack helped us out.

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For all that we picked, a lot of apples were still consumed before they made it into the press. The jugs of cider were divided amongst the workers.

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You would not believe how good this stuff is. So sweet and intense flavor! The difference between cider and juice is that the juice from the store has had additional filtering and pasteurization (aka no flavor). Fresh cider is naturally fizzy and incredible!

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And then of course, because it was a beautiful day at the farm, we had to shoot some guns! We decided to make the cider pressing an annual event. Can’t wait for next year!

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6 thoughts on “APPLE CIDER! Fresh from the Farm . . .

  1. So fun to see your documentation of this. You got some great shots! What a beautiful day for such a fun event. Can’t wait for “Sutter Cider Fest 2016”! 🙂

    Like

  2. Candace, I found your blog via my mother in law, via Alisa, a friend of your sisters? Random, I know. Anyway, I love this post. My MIL wrote me and said she found my match as far as a wife being crazy about her husband. (My husband is Eph 3:20 for me) I love and LIKE him. Funny that you said that b/c I often tell him that I like him for fun – b/c I do!

    Loved the scripture you share and agree that to know God is to love and like him. (MUCH!) I love the Lord first and my husband next. Glad to find your site. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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