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Another family fun day, with super sweet results

March 11, 2013

No, I’m not using slang. I don’t say, “Sweet!” as an exclamation about anything…guess I’m too old.

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I’m talking about real sweetness: maple syrup. For our March Family Fun Day, we took the kids to tap some maple trees in a friend’s yard. This may sound ignorant of me, but I was surprised that all this took place in a neighborhood. I guess I had images of going to a vast piece of property to gather our sap. However, we tapped three trees and collected untold gallons of sap. The kids helped Warren drill several holes in each tree, and all were connected to one piece of tubing, which drained in a bucket secured with a lid. All we needed were a few cold nights followed by warm sunny days, and less within a week we had our sap.

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It was 24 degrees the day we tapped the trees!

So far we’ve boiled down about 20 gallons of sap (yes, GALLONS!), and procured ourselves about 1/2 gallon of syrup. I was buying one gallon of syrup a year (I know that, because we always picked it up from my Mom in Florida, who purchased it at Costco), so if we are halfway to supplying our years’ worth. If we figure out how much electricity we are using to reduce all this sap, we may decide it is not a financially sound practice, but it is a fun little adventure for the kids. I gave them each a glass of fresh sap to taste; none of them were all that enthralled and declared it to taste pretty much like water.

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Sap on the left, syrup on the right- the amazing transformation!

I am a city girl by birth, but I am still in awe that God created a TREE that gives us this sweetener. He could have just made lettuce and beets and squash, and that would still be great. But no, we have sweetness, and limitless variety in our food. It sort of makes me wonder why man ever thought we needed to improve on all this goodness!

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The kids have deemed it the best maple syrup ever. Maple syrup on hot fresh bread. Life is good.

In searching for tips about boiling down sap, I came across this helpful (and fun!) blog, and I thought you might enjoy it, too:

The Girl’s Guide to Guns and Butter

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One Comment leave one →
  1. March 11, 2013 10:14 pm

    That is great that you guys made your own syrup! Daniel’s grandfather does the same!

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