Sunday, December 4, 2011

Tears of Sadness and Joy

I sit here just looking over my blog posts, shamed and mad at myself for not posting more this year, when so much has gone on. In trying to get used to having such a full house of boys and a new season of life, I missed so many opportunities to post special moments. I hope to not make this mistake next year. I teared up looking at what I did have posted. God has so blessed me, with the precious children He has give me stewardship of. I pray I do not fail Him in training them up in His word and path. Sean and I pray for wisdom and lots of grace in this task He has for us. I also have such an incredible husband, loving, strong and most of all, seeking Gods will and trying his best to walk in His ways.With the closing of another year I reflect on my chooses, moments, blessings, and trials. I know I can't go back and change anything, and I don't think I would even if I could. Even in my failures I learned and grown. So tears of sadness and joy I let fall today, with a hopeful heart ready for a new year.

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Advent Calander

With Christmas fast approaching, we are all getting ready. So here is a fun idea I came across a few weeks ago. It's an advent calendar. I just loved the idea and so I made my own with my personal twists. I found the directions difficult to follow, probably because of my lack of sewing knowledge or because it is off a foreign blog. Ether way I decided to post my own tutorial on how I did it. Below are a few different shots of the almost finished calendar.
I hung it in my dinning room. I love the baby cloth pins holding them on the joop twine.
So first I picked out a few different prints from my stash. Then I cut out 24 8x8 squares.
Then cut those squares in half diagonally.
Place two triangles right side together.
Sew down the middle edge with a 1/4 seem allowance.
Now you have a square. Yes, you could have just folded it originally and ironed a seem, but if you want different patterns together do it this way. This one is just a demo.
Now iron seems down flat. Yes tedious, but worth it. It looks so much nicer when your done.
Clip corners. fold in half, and sew down the long side at 1/4 seem. Bring seem to tip at the bottom.
I then ran a quick iron over it lightly to get the shape I wanted without pressing it down.
Flip it over and fold down top, Press with iron.
Sew this folded corner down leaving space to slide string through. Then cut exposed seem down.

When all you cones are done string then on ribbon or twine. I made mine in groups of five, they seem to hang neater this way. I will also be numbering them soon. And to the wonderful purpose of this cute little calendar. I will be putting objects, activities and scripture all speaking of the birth of Christ. We have a wonderful devotional that our Pastor and his family wrote that we will be using along with the calendar. That even got a nice bag to hold it as well. Let the count down begin.

Thursday, September 29, 2011


After 5 years with no tub, and 2 or 3 years with a claw-foot tub on my deck, it is finally in. A few weeks ago we started the bathroom. Sean took out the shower stall and a wall. Here are some before and afters.
Shower Before:

The shower, Yuk!!!!

Tub After:
The tub!!!!! I have already taken two tubs in it, and they were wonderful. As you can see we need to do the floor and put in dry wall. But that will come in time.

Window and Walls Before:
Window and Walls After:

I am not done painting as you can see but I just love the new wall color, and color for the furniture. I also really love the new window treatment. It is a simple piece of fabric with a tenchen rod, I sewed the edges and they frayed on there own. It also lets lot of light in but still provides privacy. I wanted the curtain to be light because the show curtain is heavy and this is a small bathroom. Also if you look to the right of the window you can see a wooden clip. This is how we open the curtain to let the breeze in. I will take better picture of every thing when we are done.

Finial here is the sink area. I do not have a before sadly but I assure you it looks so much better. I changed the mirror. The one before was a large piece of glass that's it. We also changed to sink fixture and accessory. It is in this rubbed bronze finish that I love. I painted the silver light fixture to match the sink fixture. I bought a rubbed bronze spry paint and then brushed on a copper glaze to finish it looks pretty good.

Any ways the bathroom is coming along nicely, cant wait to finish up. Stay tuned.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Strawberry Jam

I love strawberries and so does the whole family. But sadly they are expensive to buy in large amounts to make jam with, so we just eat them. But the other day I went to produce day. OK, I feel I need to stop and explain for those that don't know what produce day is. Some of the ladies I know pick up produce from the market that they can't sell. Out of date and such. Most of the veggies and fruit are still good. Then these ladies open there homes or churches to friends, family and to the public to take what ever they want. Then the left overs go to farms for the pigs.  It is a big help some weeks for us and some times we really score. This was one of our biggest scores. When I showed up there was so many pints of strawberries. So I grab a banana box of strawberries and ran. When I got home and counted, I had 23 pints. WOW!!!!

Is that not a wonderful site. So a sorting and cutting I went. Jam Jam and more Jam was on the agenda. After about an hour I had 12 or 13 pounds of cut up strawberries.

Then off to jam. I used 20 cups of my little red beauties and it made 5 quarts of soooo good strawberry jam. That amount would have made more but I cut the sugar amount in half, but the taste is so much better. Not as sugary and more of the strawberry flavor. Did I say it was so yummy, I think I did, but it bares repeating. It was yummy.

Aren't they gorgeous. But, there is a sad part to this love story. While processing my jars, one broke. A whole quart gone, never to be seen from again, no topping warm toast or drizzling over vanilla ice cream. No mixing it up with oatmeal or just out of the jar on it's own. As a tear falls from my eye, I reflect on the quarts shorted life and try to remember the good times we had together. Oh, sorry I got lost there for a second. Any oh, the good news is I still have about 15 to 20 cups left so I will be jamming those really soon, before they get eaten.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Garden Update

The garden is looking wonderful this year, I am so excited. We are getting lots of stuff from it. And soon I will have lot of tomatoes. Big thanks to Julie for all her help.

Here is our pumpkins and Winter Squash. I have one very big white pumpkin and at least 3 winter squashes. There are some Long pie pumpkins coming in as well.
Here are the peppers and rows of lettuces. The lettuces is cool, you cut it and it grows back. I love that, we have had lots of fresh lettuce to eat and give away.
In the back you can see my beans. They are called rattle snake beans, they are purple and green. I cant wait to see them. The empty space was for the sugar snap peas. There are only four planets that came in late. But now they are looking good.
Here Is the egg plant, cauliflower and  Brussels sprouts. Surrounded by tomatoes.
Yellow Pear tomatoes.
Some harvested cucumbers, yellow squash, peppers, golden beats and onions. Yummy!!!

Friday, July 15, 2011

Follow By E-mail

Check out my new feature bellow Follow This Site, on the left hand side. If you type in your e-mail address, you will be notified every time I post something. Super easy to do, and any e-mail account works. Hope you join.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Yogurt 101

I have been trying more and more to make things by hand. Yogurt was one thing on my to do's. But it scared me. I looked at lots of tutorials and spoke to friends that had done it. After lots research and dragging my feet, I tried it. I was shocked at how easy it really is. Now people are asking me how I make it, which is a new thing. So I am posting on my blog a tutorial, who would of thought.

Step 1: Get milk. I use good organic or raw milk, why make your own if your going to use cheep milk. You can tho.
Step 2: Buy yogurt (8oz) with live culture. It will say it on the container. Plain or flavored I found it does not matter.
Step 3: Warm your milk in a large pot slowly. If you do it to fast you can burn it (trust me I know), also don't forget about it. It can take up to 20 mins some times. When you have a film on the top, its done.
Step 4: Take milk off heat and let cool till you can leave your finger in the milk for a long 10 seconds. This also can take up to or more than 20 mins.
Step 5: Add your cultured yogurt and mix it in so you do not have clumps left, go slow so not to splash.
Step 6: Put milk in a contained that has a lid. I use my Pampered Chef batter bowl.
Step 7: Place container in a place to keep it warm over night or for 8 hours or more. I use my crock pot (NOT PLUGGED IN OR ON) I wrap my batter bowl in a bath towel, cover it with a towel, put crock pot lid on it and then cover the pot with another towel.
Step 8: Leave allow! I have left my yogurt over night, but found it was to thin. I know leave it for almost 24 hours. It is super thick just the way I like it.
Step 9: I pour off the way (a clear water like liquid that separates from the yogurt) then I place a clean kitchen towel gently on the top of the yogurt. Put the lid on and place in fridge.
Step 10: Enjoy. I love having fresh yogurt just waiting for me in my fridge. I add fruit, honey and other stuff to make it yummy. Homemade yogurt taste like plain yogurt, so it can be tart. The longer you leave it out when making it the more tartness you will get. But that can be fix by adding sweeteners. Each time I get yogurt out I remove the towel and rise it with hot water, it will continue to collect the way each time.
***Warning*** Just remember your working with dairy. I have never had a problem with how I do it, but there are lots of people that follow stricter rule when making yogurt. There are temperatures to reach and keep your milk at, and other rules I ignore. So if you are using my method it is at your own risk. Do the research and try different ways, I find that is always the best way to find what will work for you.
I hope you try it, homemade food is so yummy and so much better for you. In this economy finding ways to save money is key. Sometimes the place is in our groceries. You would be shocked at what your eating and how much you are paying for it. I encourage you to read labels. With the health food trend on the rise I am more informed then I was a few years ago, but am making smarter changes slowly. First and foremost I want to please God with being a good steward of the family He gave me, and caution about jumping on any new trends. But homemade food is the comfort food your family will appertate and remember. The taste of your yogurt and the smell of bread baking in the over will fill the house with warmth and love. And I laugh to myself when I think about were I was in the way of baking just a few years ago. I could not even make
 cookies with out tragic issue. So good luck, if you set your mind to a task don't let anything stop you.

Friday, July 8, 2011

Ok Thats Just Silly

I sent the boys out side to the porch to eat there Popsicle. When I came out of the kitchen David and Michael had pulled a chair up to the screen door so they could watch the tv. Silly goofs.

From My Gardern

I love to garden, but I was born with two Brown thumbs LOL. This is only funny if you know that my maiden name was Brown. Hehe I make myself laugh. After a few years of working out the kinks, this year I am super proud of my garden. Here is the main section loaded with lots of goodies. From peppers, to lettuces. I was not able to fit all in this section even tho it is almost triple the size it was last year.
So here is a few things, like pumpkins, squash and some cuccs.
Above is the last section with summer squash and zucchini. Every thing is doing really well and I already have harvested more radishes then we can eat. I can't wait for the other stuff, yummy