I woke up this morning around 6:30, and when I went into the living room and my dad was just walking into the living room. A short time later MrB decided it was he was going to go fishing. He thought since it wasn’t as cold as it had been the last few mornings, he would not get too cold. Honestly he has fished before when the water droplets on the fishing rod were freezing to the rod. He almost got frostbite that day. I could’ve whipped him. Before he left, my dad bought us an egg white and cheese Subway breakfast sandwich.
MrB had ordered a discounted Groupon for the Belle Chèvre goat creamery. We got there before our scheduled tour time, but since we were the only ones there at the time the tour guide took us to see the goats. The creamery doesn’t actually have any milk goats. They source their milk from North Carolina mainly because of the volume they need to run the business . The goats were so cute, and those little girls enjoyed the attention. I learned from the tour guide more about goats in general including the fact that these were Nubian goats, and that they could be identified by their floppy ears. These were not milk goats, they seemed to be more like ambassadors for the creamery. We petted all three goats, and I found out they like having their chins scratched, and on top of their head right between their horns. A black goat would get jealous and push the other goats out of the way so he could get attention.
After petting the goats we went into a big building with benches that were actually church pews. The tour guide started a documentary on the current CEO of the creamery, and how she decided to get into this business. She had taken a sabbatical from her technology based job, and she registered at a culinary school in New York City. One day in the city she stopped in a shop, and had this amazing cheese. She looked closer at the package and learned that the creamery was close to where she grew up. She decided she wanted a part of that business. She quit school and moved back to Alabama after securing a job with Belle Chèvre. This cheese has won awards both locally and nationally.
After the documentary, we met up with the tour guide and two ladies who joined our tour. We went to some windows where we could watch some of the employees work on the cheese. At this time they were taking logs of goat cheese and putting the in their wrappers. After they finished a tray of cheese they took 6 logs at a time, and put them into a vacuum sealer to get all the air out of it. Then they do something interesting. The workers then put the vacuum sealed cheese down into a brine solution. The amazing thing was that after they put the cheese in the brine solution it made the cheese package look perfect. The tour guide went in to get one that hadn’t been put in the brine solution. That cheese log had lots of wrinkles in the wrapper, and after the brine solution the wrapper was smooth. I’m not really sure how that works.
After that we all went to the lobby of the creamery and started the cheese tasting. I can’t recall ever having goat cheese before so I wasn’t sure how I’d like it. We first tasted the original cheese, and it was a little tangy, but not bad. Then we went thru flavors like cinnamon, fig, pimento cheese, coffee, olive leaf brined cheese, one that was called Southern Belle that had bourbon soaked pecans and dusted with sugar and mint. They were all awesome, and with our Groupon deal we got two free containers of cheese. We picked cinnamon and fig. We also tasted an amazing goat cheese cheesecake with a hint of lemon flavor. It was so amazing!
We went to a little restaurant owned by the creamery. I decided to get a five cheese grilled cheese sandwich. It had fig, gruyere, smoked gouda, regular gouda, cheddar, and onions added. It came with a side of pickled okra. I’ve never really eaten any pickled okra, but I liked it. MrB got a slice of the amazing cheesecake we had sampled. He bought me some pimento cheese, and some of the Southern Belle cheese before we left the restaurant.
After eating we visited the goats again briefly, and then we headed to an apple orchard. It is a yearly tradition for us, and it’s always fun. When you get to the orchard you see a lot of pumpkins out in the front lawn. Inside you will find on one side of the building there are people working on sorting thru the apples to pick the best ones for selling. It is interesting to see the process of the apples going down a conveyer belt, and the people working there picking over the apples while inspecting them. There are huge bins with different apples. You can get bags of all the same type apples, and then there is a table with apples you can pick thru and make a mixed bag. MrB worked on getting a bag full of various apples. I went along the parameter of the building where they had everything from jellies, cider, candy apples, honey, molasses, frozen cider, and sweet potatoes. We purchased the bag of mixed apples, I picked up a reduced sugar apple butter, a half peck of sweet potatoes, and MrB couldn’t pass up getting a gallon of the cider.
When we finished we went home. I ate one of the apples, and it was delicious. I think it was a red delicious apple. My dad had watched the doggies for us, so I was thankful. I had a microwave meal for dinner instead of leftovers. I have not been doing as well on my diet lately as I should be, but I’m determined to get better. Also we have done a lot more eating out this month, and I’m going to nip that in the bud immediately.
I worked on my loom knitting while MrB and my dad watched TV. I had gotten sleepy the night before, and was trying to do the knitting, and I messed it up so bad that I had to unravel the whole blasted hat. I was part of the way thru it, but I learned my lesson to not knit when I’m about to fall asleep. I had a bit of insomnia, and didn’t go to bed until about 12:30am. Unusual for me lately, but I finally got to bed.
Today’s Frugal Activities
Ok, so I admit that today was not the most frugal of days, but we did have a few good things.
- Windows open letting in the cool air. (MrB left them open when it got down in the 30’s outside! Thank goodness for lots of blankets.) So no heat running.
- Ate supper at home.
- Continuing to work on Christmas presents to drastically lower the amount of money we spend this year.
While MrB was on vacation from work last week we discussed what our goals are for the future. We plan on trying to get all our bills paid off as soon as possible, perhaps moving to the country and building a small house, and doing some homesteading activities. I’m currently trying to build up a couple months in our emergency fund. We are on the same page when it comes to pretty much all of our goals.