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Raising Ducks


Everyone I've met says ducks are a pain- they're messy, loud, smelly. So I must be crazy because I loved my ducks! We raised them inside for the first couple of weeks- ok probably longer than that, but who can say no to that sweet little face? Mom and I would fill up the tub (when we were supposed to be going to bed) and let them swim in it- or the sink. Hey? Who needs to brush their teeth? (Just kidding.) It was so cute to watch them play in the water! The first time they went under the water on a duck dive we thought they were drowning.  We screamed, mom panicked and it turns out they were fine.  LOL! Memories and heart attacks!   They love to dive under and come up on the other side of their swimming hole.



So anyway meet Quackery and Zachery, for the first few weeks we kept them in a plastic tub with a layer of shavings, with a heat light, and small water and food container that we picked up at our local farm store. Later we moved them out into a covered rabbit hutch. When the got bigger we would let them swim in the ponds. Warning- they are very destructive to water lilies. Sorry, Grandma! Talk to your farm supply about what they recommend feeding them. We fed ours duck chick starter  to cracked corn once they were moved out into the rabbit hutch.


These guys were supposed to grow up and fly away- but that's not quite how it turned out. These guys apparently really liked our house because it took us taking them down to the animal preserve and releasing them on the lake to get them to spread their wings and take flight.


Here are some cute videos from when they were babies, aren't they cute?


To me they were super easy to raise and really fun- yes they can be messy but so can any other critter you raise. If you keep their cages clean it will keep the smell down I promise. As for being loud so is my dog. I loved their antics and how they would follow us around when they were little. 







We didn't get ducks again until a couple years ago when a friend gave me one. It couldn't walk and its head lolled over to one side. When I went in to get feed she grabbed me and handed me this little yellow duck She told me if anyone could keep her alive it was me- and took off. Apparently something went wrong with the hatch or it had a stroke on the way from the hatchery and it had brain damage. She was really sweet, though. We named her Aaliyah Gabriela. The video below is us helping her swim. She couldn't hold her body up so we held her and let her kick her legs. She loved ice cream too! But, I have no idea how she got a hold of it... [insert guilty whistling here].



Please remember that ducks along with any animals are a life long commitment- for better or worse. They can be hurt, they are not toys and they can not simply be thrown out. Please be responsible.


Check out our other posts on raising animals below. Or for more posts check out our farm page.

      

Mansker's Station - A Trip Down Memory Lane


Mansker's Station was a colonial American fort set up to protect the people from attacks during the Native Americans Wars. It was built by Kasper Mansker who was a Virginian long hunter. The photo above is a reproduction of the original building that you can visit today.  It is located in Goodlettsville, Tennessee. This is not the original location of the fort, it was a few miles away on Mansker's Creek. It was a log structure like the one above that he built in 1780.  This was one of several forts built upon the trail called Avery Trace.  

The Avery Trace was the main way for people to get from Knox, TN to the fort out west in Nashville. It was a was to encourage settlers to move west. The area of the road was Cherokee hunting trails following buffalo. It connected a string of colonial forts from Campbells Station to Fort South West Point then to Fort Blount from there it went to Bledsoe Fort than to Manskers Station ending at Fort Nashboro. 

This would provide protection for families that lived in the area from attack but also provided a place to rest for travelers along the way. 


The Avery Trace was once nothing more than Native American hunting trails that connected the area of what is now Knox, TN to what would later be Nashville, TN. It was later widened to a ten-foot wide road by hired soldiers. The soldiers were given land grants of 800 acres in exchange for one year of work. The project was started in 1787. Our 6x great grandfather Archibald McCaleb was the co-founder of one of the forts named Campbell Station and it was in what later became Knox County, Tennessee. Archibald was one of the people that petitioned the government to widen the trail that became the Avery Trace road. Campbell Station is no longer in existence sad to say so we have no way to experience where he lived, but he and his wife Mary with  David and Margaret Campbell settled there on March 7, 1787. Archibald had a 350-acre land grant.  While living at the fort Mary gave birth to our grandpa Andrew.  There are documents that speak of their life there at the fort.  It tells of attacks from the Native Americans and theft of their horses and the hardships of life in the 1700s. The families started the building by initially building one cabin for the Campbells and then they built the McCaleb cabin. Soon others joined them and began building their homes. 

Archibald fought in the American Revolution and the war of 1812 but was killed by the Indians as he traveled to join Andrew Jackson September 16, 1813.


This is the big house and is used as sort of an Inn above for single men. There are also cabins for families.  The holes are for shooting in the event of an attack.


Water is an important part of survival.  Here the children are gathering water.


A great event that helps teach the public about life in the 1700's in America.


Me all dressed up.


Care for a ride? The horse and cart or ox cart were important items to have.  You needed the animals for transportation but also to get your grain to a local mill for preparation.


An ox ready to pull his cart.


Military tents at the ready for nightfall.


In 1781 the fort was abandoned and everyone one move to Fort Nashbrough in Nashville. Two men returned for their possessions the next day and were killed and the fort burned. Manskers came back in 1783 and built a bigger fort a mile away from the original location and lived there with his wife.


Amongst the forts many visitors was President Andrew Jackson. 

When God Gives Us A New Dream - Heather


Twenty years ago if I had painted a picture of what I thought my life would look like now; it would be completely unrecognizable from where I actually am.  


I wasn’t a college girl who floated through school and hoped she would figure out the rest of her life.  I had known since 4th grade that I was supposed to be in the medical field.  I planned my life around becoming a medical missionary – using a medical degree in foreign countries as a way to open the door to sharing the Gospel of Jesus with others.  A medical degree became a nursing degree.  Foreign missions were exchanged for living in the United States and supporting other missionaries.    But there was no question in my mind that God was going to use me to help others find optimum physical health.  After all, not everyone can handle blood and guts and gore without flinching, right?!


I excelled in nursing.  Graduating summa cum laude was only a glimpse into the way God gifted me to learn and grow.  The hospital where I did my college preceptorship hired me straight out of college, and within 3 months I was a charge nurse in the neurosurgical step down unit.  I loved my job.  I loved helping people.  I loved every bit of the direction of my life.


When my husband and I moved to Georgia, I quickly found a new hospital to partner with.  The next 11 years of my life were filled with everything cardiac.  I went from working for the hospital to working for a private group of physicians who allowed nurses to have heavy responsibility for their hospital patients.  It was an incredible season.


So it’s understandable that I was shocked when God told me to quit my job.  Just like that.  He impressed on my heart that I was so involved with my job that I had forgotten about the people who surrounded me.  People like my own children, my neighbors, and the people I served with at church in the kid’s ministry.


So I did.


I quit my job.


And I started investing in the lives of those around me.  I asked acquaintances to have coffee with me.  Some of those acquaintances became close friends.  I invited other moms to the park with their kids.  Some of those kids remain close friends of my own children.   I asked other volunteers to lunch.  Some of those volunteers make up my leadership team today.


What leadership team?  The leadership team who now oversees the preschool ministries at our church’s two locations.  You see, God told me to quit my job as a nurse when our church was barely one year old.  We were very small, but growing.  God had plans for me all along.  He allowed me to become part of something when it was just in its infancy, to grow me along with His plan.   I wasn’t ready to see His full plan right away.  There were about 150 people attending our church when I started volunteering.   I now oversee over 150 volunteers.  


It took me years to stop saying “I’m a nurse” (though I will always consider myself one).  It wasn’t until about 6 months ago that I started acknowledging that God called me to lead people.  My identity is no longer tied into being a registered nurse.  My identity is reflecting God to those around me.   


Gently, persistently, God has grown me from who I thought I was supposed to be into who He desires for me to be.  The current version of me is the right me for this moment.  This moment may not last forever, but that’s ok, because I have learned that the picture I have of my life may be far different from what God’s picture looks like.


I guarantee His is more beautiful.


Hi!  I’m Heather.  I’m a low-maintenance, generally happy kind of gal who likes a new challenge.  I’m a wife, a mom, and a leader of a spectacular team of volunteers.  If you see a situation that calls for action, you probably won’t see me on the sidelines watching.


Breakfast Calzone



Dough Ingredients:

3 Teaspoons Baking Powder 
2 Teaspoons Organic Raw Sugar 
1/2 Teaspoon Cream of Tartar 
1/4 Teaspoon Sea Salt
1/2 Cup Grassfed Butter
2/3 Cup Organic Milk



Filling Ingredients:

4 Organic Sausage 
5 Pieces Of  Nitrate Free Bacon 
5 Free Range Eggs 
3 Cups Organic Mexican Cheese Mix

Stir together in a medium size bowl flour, baking powder, sugar, cream of tartar and salt. Cut in butter until crumbly. Add milk, and stir until combined, but don't over stir. Roll out. Scramble eggs and season to taste, fry bacon, and cook sausage. Spoon onto one part of the dough and add cheese. Fold the other half over and press edges together.

Bake at 350 F. for 25 minutes.

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When God Gives Us A New Dream | Kaitlin Beckwith

 

When I was 18, I had it ALL figured out. I was never getting married, was going to a big college in an artsy city to major in studio art and arts management. I was eventually going to move to The Big Apple and live in a studio apartment with exposed brick walls and have a space in a shared art studio where I would paint and draw when I wasn’t working my prestigious job at some super cool gallery, which would lead to the Met taking interest in me and hiring me for a top paying job. See? All planned out.

Things started out on that path. I did go to the college in the cool city. I did major in art and arts management while there. And I was a featured artist and employee in an art gallery. Except…I didn’t like that school, and I didn’t like my friendships, and I didn’t like who I had become there.
So, I transferred. To the school that NO ONE expected me to ever attend…this tiny Christian college 25 minutes from my parent’s house. See, I was VERY vocally atheist. Also, I was very anti-staying close to home or living with parents after high school. SO when I moved home and defied all those things I was so vocal about, everyone thought I was losing my mind. After some stressful years, I graduated on time with a degree in Communications, just a few credit hours shy of a minor in studio art. I kept working in galleries and arts councils on the management side until about a year and a half ago.
PS—I did get married. Less than a year after graduating college. Also, I don’t live anywhere near NYC and have only been there twice.

My dreams have changed. Like…completely. My dreams used to revolve around me and what I thought was such an exciting life. And it is, for someone else. Now, though, I dream of so many better things.


I dream of starting a family. I frequently pause in the baby section of stores and wonder when I’ll be shopping there. I think about the children we plan to adopt and wonder if their birth mom is already pregnant and pray that our babies will be safe and loved until we can bring them home. I dream of growing old with my husband and spending hours on our wraparound porch in the farmhouse we dream of owning someday.

I dream of photographing marriages beginning and love stories unfolding. Of capturing a baby’s entrance into the world on camera, and preserving the moments husbands and wives become mothers and fathers. This dream, this one I’m living. And I love every second of it.

If I hadn’t become a Christian, I wouldn’t be living these dreams out. If God hadn’t stepped in, this wouldn’t be my life. If God hadn’t taken over and done the dreaming for me, I don’t really care to think of what my life would have been.

His plans are always greater. His plans come from Him knowing us better than we could ever hope to know ourselves.


When I was applying for colleges, and moving into my freshman door, and going to parties I never should have been at, he knew what was coming. When I was heartbroken and scared and felt all alone, He knew I was just days away from meeting him. When I was new to believing and didn’t even think I was praying right, He knew my heart and knew where my life was going.

“For you know, oh man, what is good. And what does the Lord require of you, but to do justice, love kindness, and walk humbly with your God.” Mica 6:8

This is my life verse. This verse guides me. When I want to take over and be in charge of my life and know everything that’s coming, this is the verse I come back to. I look back over the way He changed my heart, my life, and my dreams, and I remember…He knew me then, He knows me still, and He will never lead me where I’m not meant to be. 

Do justice. Love kindness. Walk humbly. Living this out, He’ll give you the best dreams. And the best part is? They’re going to come true.

I know mine have.


I'm Kaitlin Beckwith, owner and photographer at Captured by Kaitlin Rose LLC. I live in Upstate South Carolina, where I met and eventually married my high school sweetheart, Drew, who wouldn’t be mine if we hadn’t each met and fallen in love with Jesus during one of our breakups…but that’s a story for another day. Our enormous Great Dane/Lab mix, Lincoln, is currently our only child and keeps our lives interesting, whether he’s eating couches or pretending to be a lap dog for optimal snuggling.

Find her on FacebookInstagram & Twitter and also check out her Website 

*All photos were taken by my second shooter, Lauren Curry, of LC Photography.*

Shrimp Linguine Alfredo


Ingredients:

1 Package Organic Linguini
1 cup of Organic Milk
2 Tablespoons of Organic Butter
2 Tablespoons of Organic Flour
1 package Pre-cooked Medium Shrimp
Himalayan Pink Salt To Taste
Pepper To Taste
Garlic Powder
Onion Powder

Directions:

Boil pasta as directed on the package. Drain well.  In a pan on low, heat 2 Tablespoons Butter until melted. Add your flour and stir until thick.  To this add your milk and whisk until it is combined and there are no lumps. Add your seasonings and whisk continually until the sauce thickens. Toss in thawed shrimp to heat. Pour this mixture over your pasta and serve hot.  Great with breadsticks and a Caesars salad.

For the Breadstick Recipe Click The Photo Below.





Leave a comment below to let us know what you think of the recipe and find us here on Facebook to send us a photo of your creation and keep up with us there. 

Spring At The Cottage


Finally! Spring. Is. Here!! It looks like a wedding in the front yard when it's breezy. We thought we would share some of our favorite shots with you.





















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