Saturday, December 11, 2010
Wednesday, December 1, 2010
Tuesday, November 9, 2010
In your crock pot add 1 kielbasa (or polish sausage) that has been cut up. I try to cut it up in ½ and then in ½ again before slicing it into small chunks. I add chopped potatoes, and those small baby carrots you can now get at the grocery store. Cook until tender. Add some water to also extend the soup.
You can top the soup with cheese, sour cream, onions and even salsa...
For a more filling soup add – leftover vegetables, or add barley.. Sometimes I make rice and put the soup over the rice.
Thursday, September 2, 2010
Friday, July 30, 2010
Well corn season is in full swing and although I do not have a corn patch, Jim gets our corn from a lovely Amish man in Ohio.
Monday, April 5, 2010
This weekend we are going to a large Flea market in Ohio. It is a 2 day affair and covers the fairgrounds. One of the largest around. I hope to come back with some more rabbits, and poultry. Mariann requested a hairless rat. Bethany and Ryan will meet us there and they are planning to get pigs.
You would think that the only thing this Flea Market had was livestock, but that is the main reason we go. It has everything else that a flea market would carry - new clothes, old dishes and kitchen pots and pans, tools of all kinds. You could probably find what you are looking for here...
I haven't had vacation time in quite a while, and I love wandering around this place. It is a vacation for me just to get away for a day, so I am looking forward to this trip.
HARD BOILED EGGS
It is easier to peel an older egg than a fresh one.
Add eggs straight from fridge, in a single layer across the base of a saucepan. Add enough cold water to cover them by at least 1 inch. Slowly bring water to just under boiling point. 10 minutes. When the time is up, remove with a slotted spoon and plunge in cold water immediately to stop the cooking process. Allow to cool so are easy to handle. Peel and serve.
6 hard-cooked eggs 2 tablespoons mayonnaise 1 teaspoon sugar 1 teaspoon white vinegar 1 teaspoon prepared mustard 1/2 teaspoon salt Paprika
Slice eggs in half lengthwise; remove yolks and set whites aside. In a small bowl, mash yolks with a fork. Add the mayonnaise, sugar, vinegar, mustard and salt; mix well. Spoon (or pipe using pastry bag) into egg white shells. Sprinkle with paprika. Refrigerate until serving.
Monday, March 15, 2010
I am going to do a lot of praying for her in Haiti. This is a tough trip for anyone, and she is so young. But this trip was in her heart and it worked out the way it was supposed to.
My group Silent Hands was asked to perform at 2 churches and their support helped Mariann a lot. At one church there were only 25 people there, and they gave of their heart - over $200! There were exactly 4 people in her home church that helped out, and for that we are grateful, but it is disappointing that we have a large church and so little support.
(If you know of a youth that would like to go on a Mission Trip with other teenagers, check out http://www.globalexpeditions.com/ Global Expeditions has been sending youth to over 30 countries for 20 years or more. Brandon has been on 2 trips - both 2 months long. This will make Mariann's 5th trip since she was 16 - some 2 weeks, some a month long. She has done fundraising and works at McDonald's to help pay for these trips)
She will be heading to Colorado Springs in late April-early May. She was given the gift of house sitting for the fiance of one of our best friends. The plans have not been finalized, but I think she is ready to travel away from this area. There isn't a lot to hold her here, and she does need to get out and meet new people and see new areas. Brandon and his wife are out there, so she will have family. And of course, after Stacy gets married Mariann will have her out there.
I am hoping to go back to the churches with Silent Hands to perform again and let Mariann tell of her experiences in Haiti. This will be the last time Mariann will be able to sign with our group.
Sunday, February 28, 2010
Last night we had to help Mariann's car get out of the middle of the snowy road - of course it didn't quite make it up the first leg of our road. We followed a pick up truck out (we were in the Rhino lol... "Here we come to save the Day"!!).
So the truck stops and a guy gets out at the same time we do. The guy was in his late 20's I'd say...
Jim started giving Mariann directions, then Jim and I pushed the car a little..then an little more. Reverse... forward...reverse...forward... a very tiny 80 point turn...
Inch by inch we turned Mariann's car around until she finally headed back down the hill.
What did the guy in the pick up truck do?? Got in his truck and watched us...
Do Mamas not teach their boys chivalry anymore???
I would be so surprised (and annoyed) if my son ever watched an older man and woman help a young girl and just sat in his warm truck and watched!
Tuesday, February 23, 2010
The pickup truck developed an oil leak tonight. Luckily my husband Jim is so very quick. The minute he heard a slight "ticking" he stopped the truck and poured oil in it. We drove home and we are hopeful that the engine was not damaged!
And, of course we do not have a car to replace the Subaru that burned in January... The snow has been so deep that I haven't wanted to go look for a vehicle. And we will have to get a loan, which I don't want (Nana held the other loan)...
But, I made cauliflower salad today for Jim's lunches. Plus banana bread - instead of using sour cream, I put in vanilla yogurt - less fat and a great taste.
OK... time to count my blessings...
1.We have a warm house, food, and clothing!
2.Nana doesn't have to see any doctors... she is pretty healthy.
3.Mariann has water in her well - Jim and I pulled the pump out of the well on Sunday (all 200 ft of pipe). It was a job, but the two of us can work well together.
4. We are healthy and still love and respect each other
So, in the scheme of things, we are doing pretty good...
Thursday, February 18, 2010
1 gallon snow 1 cup white sugar 1 tablespoon vanilla extract 2 cups milk
When it starts to snow, place a large, clean bowl outside to collect the flakes. When full, stir in sugar and vanilla to taste, then stir in just enough milk for the desired consistency. Serve at once.
Ice cream snow # 2
1 (12 fluid ounce) can evaporated milk 2 eggs, beaten 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract 3/4 cup white sugar 1 gallon snow
In a large bowl, combine evaporated milk, eggs, vanilla and sugar until smooth. Gradually stir in snow until mixture reaches desired consistency. Eat at once.
It's February and it reminds me of the first year we were here... a lot of our time was spent cutting firewood, and we are doing the same this year. Our firewood pile was depleted early this year, so Jim and I are out cutting and hauling... boy do we miss the kids!
I am writing a book on the first winter we lived here... the winter, snow and cold has been easy to recall!
Tuesday, January 26, 2010
An excellent day to make some chili and bake fresh bread. Fresh bread is so easy to make - and I have a recipe that I don't even knead. I let it rise on top of the oven while the oven is pre-heating, then I pop it in the oven. I bake it in 2 small metal coffee cans, so when I am ready to cut into it, the bread has ridges to follow... it can't get any more eay than that.
I have the recipe in my new recipe book that I am currently writing. Here is a preview:
EASY CHILI $1.12 plate
2 # hamburger
tomato sauce or 2 cans paste:
Choice of spices: chili powder, red pepper, salt, black pepper etc.
Brown the hamburger and pour off the grease. Add 2 cans of light red kidney beans and a large can of tomato sauce or 2 cans of tomato paste with 2 cups of water. You can put this in a crock pot to heat, or heat it until bubbly on the stove.
To make this cheaper, add left-over pinto beans, and cut down on the burger. You can use chili beans, northern beans, sausage –the flavors will all mix together. That is the beauty of chili.
Beginners Easy Bread $.25 a loaf
5 1/2 - 6 1/2 cups flour (you will probably use less)
1/4 cup softened butter
2 tbls. (or 2 packages) yeast - You can measure a tablespoon in your hand
2 1/4 cups hot tap water
2 tbls sugar
1 tbls. Salt
Combine 2 cups flour, un-dissolved yeast, sugar and salt into a large mixing bowl. Stir well to blend. Add butter and hot water. (To soften butter, I put it in the hot tap water)
Beat with a mixer on medium for 2 minutes. Scrape bowl occasionally. Add 1 more cup of flour. Beat on high for 1 minute until smooth and elastic. Gradually stir in just enough of the remaining flour with a wooden spoon to make a soft dough which leaves the sides of bowl. Using my mixer, I mix until it leaves the sides of the bowl.
Flour your hands and Knead 5 - 10 minutes (I usually don't do it this long and I do it in the mixing bowl. ) until dough is smooth and elastic and doesn't stick all over your hands. Cover with plastic wrap and a towel and let rest for 20 minutes. (I only do this if I have the 20 minutes to wait)
Punch down and divide the loaf into 2 loaves if you want 2 loaves. I use a glass 2 qt. casserole dish and bake my bread in this. Otherwise, divide into 2 loaves. Roll it out with a rolling pin, then starting with the narrow end, roll up into a jelly roll and tuck in the ends. Put this into a greased bread pan (measuring 81/2 x 41/2 x21/2).
(I skip this next part): Brush lightly with butter Cover loosely with plastic wrap.
Refrigerate 2 - 24 hours. When ready to bake, Uncover, let stand for 10 minutes while preheating oven to 400 degrees. Bake for 30 - 40 minutes or until it sounds hollow when you rap your knuckles on the top.
If you want the bread NOW! Skip the refrigerator step. Just let the dough rise, for a few minutes and pop it into the oven.
When the bread comes out of the oven and cools for a few minutes, butter the top. This keeps the crust soft. If you want a crunchy top, don't add butter.
If you are interested in my frugal recipe book ( I also have a High Lonesome Ranch cook book with recipes handed down to me) let me know!
Until then, enjoy baking bread at home!
Thursday, January 21, 2010
I have been making banana bread a lot lately. The smell in the kitchen makes your mouth water. you can eat it warm from the oven with whipped cream, for breakfast with your coffee or drink of choice, and for a snack. The recipe I use is very moist and does not dry out.
Bananas remain a very inexpensive fruit so buy a few bunches, eat them as usual and when they get a little over ripe, that is the time for a good banana bread.
I do not put nuts in mine, of course many people do. Here is my favorite recipe:
SOUR CREAM BANANA BREAD ~ My favorite
1/2 cup butter (1 stick) 2 eggs 1 cup sugar 1 tsp. vanilla extract 1 1/2 cup flour 1 tsp baking soda 1/2 tsp. salt 1 cup mashed bananas (about 3) 1/2 cup sour cream
Cream the butter with the sugar. Add the eggs and vanilla. Add the dry ingredients; mix well. Add the mashed bananas and sour cream. Grease 2 loaf pans . Fill 1/2 full with batter and bake in 350 degree oven. For 1 hour
When cool drizzle with a glaze made of confectioner’s sugar and milk
Saturday, January 16, 2010
He has been to visit her a few times and was very sweet on her... He came on pretty strong, and we were surprised to see Mariann react positively to this as she is very reserved, and grounded. She is very choosy whom she will allow into her private thoughts even. He seemed a little over the top - very talkative, exuberant - much like a Labrador puppy.
But I was surprised when I found out the reason for their lack of communication. It seems when Mariann went to Pittsburgh to meet his family, she didn't feel well. She has a monitor medically placed in her chest to monitor her heart because she was having unknown episodes. She was told that it could effect her appetite, among numerous other things. (You know those commercials when the side effects from the medication seem worse than the condition itself??)
Anyway, that weekend - maybe it was the traveling, maybe it was the nervousness, but she felt nauseous and didn't eat. I guess they kept track, not only of her non-eating habits... but also the amount of times she went to the bathroom (that wasn't enough either, I guess)!!!
His mother's conclusion? Mariann is some sort of socially - inadequate country girl. And a liar (they looked it up on the Internet and nausea wasn't listed). Not only that, she is wanting to get out of WV so badly and head for the exciting lights of Pittsburgh that she is using their precious 22 year old son to get out of WV and move to PA...
We obviously are country bumpkins - we live on top of the mountain, have lived without electricity in our self - sufficient way. Our house is not finished inside and probably won't be for a good long time - we built it with out a mortgage, and totally on our own with our young children. I guess that doesn't count for anything...
Mariann has traveled to 11 different countries since she was 16... She is independent, has been working since she was 16, was promoted to shift manager at McDonald's as the youngest one they have ever had... and still she is "socially" inadequate... wow
It all comes down to living in a state that is notorious for "hicks... hillbillies" etc. .. and we have been labeled as such by this "open minded" family.
So, he has slowly begun to distance himself from her, and it has hurt her. He was supposed to meet her 1/2 way on Sunday and his 2009 truck seems to be developing all these problems so he can't travel any distance... ha
As parents, your husband wants to punch him in the face... As a mother, I want to say something to him for being such a "Mama's Boy" .
I guess his opinion of Mariann can be so swayed so easily, by something that to me sounds ludicrous... He is not a strong enough man to be dating my daughter...
His mother was obviously really reaching for straws to come up with a reason to dislike Mariann...
Friday, January 15, 2010
Achy muscles from a bout of the flu? Mix 1 Tablespoon of horseradish in cup of olive oil. Let the mixture sit for 30 minutes, then apply it as a massage oil, for instant relief for aching muscles.
Sore Throat? Just mix 1/4 cup of vinegar with 1/4 cup of honey and take 1 tablespoon six times a day. The vinegar kills the bacteria.
Before you head to the drugstore for a high-priced inhaler filled with mysterious chemicals, try chewing on a couple of curiously strong Altoids peppermints. They'll clear up your stuffed nose.
Any home remedies you would want to share?
Wednesday, January 13, 2010
The weather has turned for the better and warmed up enough to melt some of the snow. Hopefully the cisterns will start to fill back up again. The sun certainly looks good outside.
We have a litter of labradoodles due this week. Olive Oil sure doesn't act like she is even close to giving birth... makes you wonder.
Sunday, January 10, 2010
We have been busy trying to keep the animals watered. The problem with homesteading is everything is much more difficult to achieve results. We have our water collected in 2 cisterns. One has run out of water, so Jim had to re-route the other so that we all have water - our house and my mother's "dauty haus" which is a large apartment attached to the main house - actually her side is probably as big as our side.
West Virginia has ended up with a lot of snow this year. I don't know if any records have been set, but the past few years have been mild. Our first winter here it was very snowy and cold like this. You can see my laundry being freeze-dried!