Woods

I woke this morning with anixiety in my chest and a weight on my shoulders.  It was just a typical day, nothing that should make me feel so out of sorts.  As I made myself a cup of coffee and stared into the sink that was already filled with dishes, I realized it was the ever growing list of burdens I place on myself.  Things that only I feel I need to accomplish, that I think,  only I can do. A walk in the woods early on an autumn morning was what I needed.  My list could wait along with the dishes.  I grabbed my husbands fleece lined flannel that he keeps hanging by the door, my coffee and Dutch. We head out.  Dutch is always more than willing to walk in the woods and I love his company. We find a hunters stand in a tree.  I try not…

If at first you don’t succeed…

Try, try again?? And sometimes again and again.  That seems to be the story of my life lately.  Take my pickled eggs and beets for instance.  Yesterday I tried to make them and for some reason I couldn’t get my hard boiled eggs to peel – at all. I ended up throwing one dozen eggs into the garbage out of sheer frustration.  If that wasn’t enough, after I painstakingly peeled and boiled a half dozen teeny tiny beets ( cuz that’s all I had in my garden..beets the size of a half dollar), I boiled all the water out of the pot and they were burnt to a crisp, stuck like glue, in the bottom of the pot.  Try cleaning that baby up!!  I quit!  I’m not cut out for all this domestic kinda stuff.  Yes my hubs loves beets, yes he loves pickled eggs, yes I love my hubs…

Sauerkraut

My daughter has been hosting a Octoberfest for the past few years.  The whole family goes and of course everyone brings something. I have been in Florida and missed every single one so last year I told my husband that I WILL be going to the next one, even if I had to swim the Atlantic to get home.  Well I am home, I didn’t have to swim, and I came up with a great idea!  I would learn to make sauerkraut using all the cabbage I have growing in my garden (46 of them to be exact – that’s alotta cabbage!) and I would give everyone a jar (or 2) to bring home with them. Win, Win, Win!! Alotta Cabbage! Sauerkraut 1 medium head of cabbage (about 3 pounds) – I used Savoy Cabbage 1 1/2 Tablespoons of salt 1 Tablespoon of caraway seeds (optional) Wash everything you will…

Oopsy!!

It was brought to my attention that the recipe for my pumpkin dip that goes along with my gingersnaps is incorrect.  It should read 1-30 ounce can of pumpkin pie mix only.  In the ingredient list it is correct but then in the instructions I stated 2 cans of pumpkin pie mix.  My bad. That’s what happens when you are up at 4 am trying to write a blog and your coffee hasn’t kicked in yet. (sure blame it on the coffee) What happened on my end is that the original recipe I use, which if you have seen my cookbook and recipe filling system you would totally understand this…the original recipe, which happens to be written on the back of an envelope by the way, ugh…the original recipe calls for 2 cans of pumpkin.  I only use 1 can because that’s how I like it and that’s how I…

Pumpkin bread with caramel icing

The days have gotten shorter and the nights have gotten cooler.  Colorful leaves cover the ground while the last of the tomatoes ripen on the vine.  Farmers markets are filled with mums in every color, pumpkins of every size and shape and last night I saw the harvest moon.  It is only September yet all the signs are here. It’s time for me to make my pumpkin bread and it has to have caramel icing. Pumpkin Bread 3 1/3 cups of flour 3 cups sugar 2 tsp. baking soda 1 1/2 tsp. salt 1 tsp. each of ground cinnamon and nutmeg 1 15 ounce can of solid pack pumpkin (or you can use fresh) 1 cup vegetable oil 4 eggs, lightly beaten 2/3 cup water 1/2 cup chopped pecans In a bowl, combine the first 6 ingredients.  Combine the pumpkin, oil, eggs and water; mix well.  Stir into dry ingredients…

Paper Bag Pumpkin

Looking for a quick fall decoration? Then you have come to the right place because I’m all about quick.  If you have a brown paper bag, paint, stain, glue, stuffing and about 1 hour then your golden.  I made a simple pumpkin template from my computer and traced it onto a brown paper bag.  Next I painted it with orange paint, leaving a bit of the brown paper to show through.  I wanted this to be rustic and kinda old looking so I was not careful and I made sure I didn’t stay in the lines. After I let this dry I slopped on some stain.  Again, no need for careful, you are just going to cut it out after anyway. Once this dried I cut it out, a front and a back piece, leaving about a 1/2 inch border.  I ran some tacky glue around the edge of the…

Fruit infused spirits

I joined Instagram.  I love it.  I have met some really nice people who are very talented and I’ve gotten some great ideas.  One women who calls herself Fancyfarmgirl is always sharing something that I think would be fun to try.  She doesn’t have a blog…yet, but if you are on Instagram you should definitely check her out.  One thing she shared that caught my interest immediately was how to make fruit infused spirits. I was all over that….why?  Well, because I love.. fruit.  With the holidays just around the corner (sorry) and the cold fall nights already here I thought it would be great to make up a batch of apple, pear, cinnamon and vanilla infused brandy.  You can use any type of alcohol and fruit combination that your little heart desires because you really can’t go wrong with this stuff.  I mean come on, we are talking fruit!…

Imposter Basil and Chicken Soup!

I was reminded of a funny story today while I was stirring a pot of homemade tomato sauce.  Many, many years ago, like before there were cell phones or internet, when I was a newbie to all things domestic, I was making a pot of tomato sauce.  I went out to my “herb garden”, which was just a window box filled with your basic tomato sauce essentials at the time.  I had oregano, basil, parsley and thyme planted.  I snipped off what I would need to flavor my sauce, feeling very proud of myself for growing and using the best ingredients.  Chopped them all up and threw them into the pot. They smelled so good and they were going to be the perfect touch for my homemade sauce.  Several weeks went by and I was back at it.  Out to my “herb garden” I went snipping my Italian herbs for…

Cleaning the Poop from the Coop!

So here’s the deal. On monday, wednesday and fridays I like to freshen up the coop.  House cleaning service comes in, gives it a good scrubbing and leaves a present on the pillow.  I like to use Thieves Household cleaner because it is a great nontoxic, biodegradable, cleansing solution that uses theraputic-grade essential oils as a germ-killer and disinfectant.  It is documented to kill over 99.96% of bacteria.  It is made with cinnamon, cloves, rosemary, lemon and eucalyptus.  It smells oh so good and it will not harm my little baby girls. Sounds like a commercial doesn’t it! So first thing I do is poop scoop.  Then I give everything a good scrubbing.  I  clean their waterer and then fill it with fresh water mixed with apple cider vinegar.  I only add the ACV once a week usually on fridays.  Then I head inside the coop to fill their nesting…

Growing herbs indoors for the winter

If you enjoy cooking with fresh herbs as much as I do then you probably want to have a steady supply for the winter.  Many herbs can be grown indoors although they will have a much shorter life then if they were grown outside.  Like many other houseplants they need water, nutrients, enough light and good air circulation.  Can anything be better then having a fresh supply of your favorite herbs right there at your fingertips?   Right now would be a good time to start preparing your herbs for indoors. You will need: Clay pots – they allow the herbs to breath better as the pots are porous. good potting soil herb seeds, cutting or plants a south side sunny window or a form of artificial light When you choose which herbs you want to bring inside keep in mind that not all herbs do well indoors.  Dill for…