Eight Maids a Milking

Welcome  “On the eighth day of Christmas, my true love gave to me, eight maids a milking.”  At first thought, I think, Oh, please do not give me eight girls and their milk cows as a Christmas gift.  But, actually, over the year, that would provide a lot of milk and dairy products for family meals and blog recipes!   And on that note, I have a Two-For-Tuesday pair of breakfast recipes and my favorite words from scripture for early risin’.  Thanks for stopping by.  Note–I may receive a small compensation from affiliate links seen on this blog post.  For further information, please see my Terms and Disclosure page.

Eight Maids a Milking
What does “eight maids a milking” have to do with being a Proverbs 31 woman?

Food For Thought  The “city kids” I used to teach would say, “What’s a “maid a milking?”  It’s a milk maid, a girl or woman whose job is to milk cows.  In history, many large manors and farms would have a staff of young women or girls whose job was solely to milk the cows and convert that milk into dairy products such as cream, butter, and cheeses for the household.  These women were not only skillful in the task of milking cows, but also had specialized talents in cheese making, turning it into a sort of art-form.  There is now a trend in “artisan cheese making” which seeks to capture the specialized and unique techniques and flavors first used by these milk maids.  I personally have never made my own cheese, so I won’t be teaching that, but I often use cheese and milk in my recipes, and today is no exception!

When I was reading about the milk maids and their jobs, my mind was led to Proverbs 31, yet again.  In verse 15, its says, “She gets up while it is still dark, and provides food for her family and portions for her servant girls.”  If you’ve ever worked with dairy cows and milking, you know about all those mornings when you get up and start your work while it is still dark.  Milking the cows comes before most everything else.  But if this is your livelihood and how you provide for your family, it’s necessary and worth it.  Most of us are not still rising early to go out and tend to the cattle, but many of us are rising at dawn, or earlier, to tackle all we must do to provide for our families.  For some that means getting up and out the door for a long commute to work, gathering financial means to support our families.  Some of us get up early, so that we can spend time in devotion and prayer before the kids get up and our day fills with busyness.  Sometimes we get up to get in that early morning run to care for our bodies and minds.  Some rise to catch a glimpse of that beautiful sunrise, and in the process experience the wonder of God’s creation and His many blessings.  Maybe you’ve been BLESSED with early morning cries from your new baby.  Some mommas I know just want a quiet, and private, shower to themselves!  The odds are, for many diverse reasons, most days of the week, we are all rising and shining before the sun is fully up.  My prayer for you this day is that whatever may bring you to leave the warmth and comfort of your beds on these early winter mornings, may you remember your blessings first and start your day in prayer and contemplation with God.  Ask for God’s leadership and guidance as you begin to navigate your day and your life in all of its fullness.

Rise and Shine Devotional
faith-family-food shares favorite verses for morning devotion and prayer time

Today’s Scripture  Any time spent in scripture and devotion in the morning is never time wasted!  Today, I would like to share a few of my favorite “get my day started” verses from the Bible.

Matthew 6:33-34  “But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.  Therefore, do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself.  Each day has enough trouble of its own.”

Psalm 5:3 “In the morning, O Lord, you hear my voice; in the morning I lay my request before you and wait in expectation.”

Lamentations 3:22-24  “Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail.  They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.  I say to myself, ‘The Lord is my portion; therefore I will wait for him.”

Isaiah 26:9  “My soul yearns for you in the night; in the morning my spirit longs for you…”

Isaiah 55:6  “Seek the Lord while he may be found; call on him while he is near.”

Isaiah 60:1-3  “Arise, shine, for your light has come, and the glory of the Lord rises upon you.  See, darkness covers the earth and thick darkness is over the peoples, but the Lord rises upon you and his glory appears over you.  Nations will come to your light, and kings to the brightness of your dawn.”

Jeremiah 29:11  “For I know the plans I have for you,’ declares the Lord, ‘plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”

Proverbs 3:5-6  “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding, in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight.”

Proverbs 19:21  “Many are the plans in a man’s heart, but it is the Lords’ purpose that prevails.”

Philippians 4:13  “I can do everything though him who gives me strength.”

Today’s Recipes  Let’s rise and shine, first with nourishment for our souls during devotional time, then with nourishment for our bodies.  I have a couple breakfast recipes to share on Two-For-Tuesday because I know some of you are going to be having house guests this holiday season.  Here’s a warm and cozy country-style breakfast with a Three Meats and Veggie Country Egg Scramble and Biscuits with Sausage Gravy.  Sun’s up and gravy’s on!

Country Egg Scramble
Eggs, bacon, sausages, potatoes, and cheese…everything you need for a filling breakfast!

Country Egg and Breakfast Meats Scramble

  • 1 large russet potato
  • 1 large bell pepper
  • 1 large red onion
  • 1 lb milk pork sausage (bulk, you will use part for the scramble and part for the gravy)
  • 1-2 links spicy chicken sausage (you can substitute ham, if you prefer)
  • 4-5 strips bacon
  • 2 TBS butter
  • 1/2 tsp EACH paprika, cumin, garlic powder
  • 1/4 tsp EACH salt and black pepper
  • 1 dozen eggs, beaten
  • 2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
  • hot sauce or salsa, for serving

Wash potato and poke all over with fork and microwave on high for 6 minutes.  While cooking, dice pepper and onion.  When potato is cooked and cooled, chop it into small pieces.

In large nonstick skillet cook pork sausage, breaking up with wooden spoon, until no longer pink.  Remove sausage to separate bowl, but keep drippings in pan.  Slice chicken sausage into thin discs and cook in same skillet, about 2-3 minutes per side.  Remove chicken sausage to separate bowl.  Cook bacon in same skillet until crisp.  Remove to paper towel to drain.  Reserve 1/4 cup of drippings in pan for the gravy.

In separate large nonstick pan, melt butter over medium heat.  Add diced vegetables and saute 3-4 minutes.  Add seasonings and stir vegetables to outer edges of pan.  Reduce heat and add eggs to center of pan and scramble with wooden spoon.  When eggs are beginning to set, mix vegetables in with the eggs.  Turn heat off.  Add HALF the pork sausage and all of the chicken sausage.  Crumble the bacon and add to the pan, along with the shredded cheese.  Stir until well combined  Serve with hot sauce or salsa, if desired.

Sausage Gravy
Classic sausage gravy with packaged biscuits for a quick and hearty breakfast. 

Biscuits and Sausage Gravy

  • 1/4 cup sausage drippings (from above recipe)
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3 cups milk
  • crumbled sausage (from above recipe)
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1-2 cans refrigerated biscuits, prepared according to package directions

In skillet with remaining sausage drippings, whisk in flour, heating over medium-low heat.  Continue to whisk until thick and golden.  Add milk, ONE cup at a time, whisking well between each addition until smooth.   When gravy is thick and bubbly, add in reserved sausage crumbles.  Stir well and taste.  After sausage has been added you will have a better idea of how much salt and pepper to add.  Some sausage is very salty and some less so, and this factor will determine how much seasoning you will want to add.  Serve with split biscuits.

Suggested Products for today’s post  I like to use my Calphalon nonstick cookware for this recipe because it makes clean up so much easier.  If you are using nonstick cookware for these recipes, be sure to use plastic or wooden utensils.  A metal whisk will damage your nonstick surfaces! Links verified on 12/12/17 at 12:50 p.m., CST.