With God at the center of our lives, even the simplest of things are infused with peace and joy!

Thursday, September 30, 2010


Let me just start out by saying, "GOD IS GOOD!"

This morning is the first time we have had all our hens laying......WOO HOO!

I am such a PROUD mamma! :> )

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Morning Surprise

This morning while I was having my coffee and watching the "girls," (our hens) I noticed that one of them decided to be a little adventurous and took off around the side of the house. Since I can't see around corners, (my super powers don't take affect until AFTER I've had my coffee) I had to go chase her down....literally! lol

Well, when I got around to the back of the house I noticed a little something peeking out from under the bottom of the pepper plants. Aren't they adorable?

What a beautiful surprise!

Thank you, Father, for the precious little gifts you give to remind us of Your presence!

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

URRGGHH! and Aww!

Before last week, things had been running, for the most part, pretty smoothly. School had already started, Bean was getting settled in and unpacked, and I'd begun getting things ready for the cooler weather to come in. BUT THEN..............................I noticed there was a little water on the floor in the kitchen around the bottom of the washer and dryer. I thought the washer was leaking so I shut the water off to the machine and waited for My Skippy Man to come home from work.

As I was sopping up the water, I noticed that the floor felt.....well....squishy, and the more I walked on the tiles, the more water came up and I realized that it wasn't just a "little bit" of water, but a HUGE amount of water. All I could do was to keep putting down towels to soak it up. After a few minutes, I noticed that the water had gone under the tiles and was soaked up by the sub-flooring and had gone out into the middle of the kitchen and now the tiles were coming up! :> ( (How did I NOT notice this before?)

After Skippy came home and did a little inspecting, he found out that the hot water heater (which was now 21 years old) had sprung a leak. Apparently, the heater had been leaking for days and I didn't notice it until there was no place else for the water to go. EEEEKKKK! (I guess I should have been doing more laundry, huh?) :> ( Not a problem though, I can always go back to pioneer days again like I did last year and boil water and wash our clothes in a bucket.

I was ok, but my family was not. Bean wanted to know how she was going to do her laundry and what to do about showers. Then I got a phone call from my close friend who asked if I would house-sit for them and take care of their cat while they were away for three weeks. The first thing she said was, "Now feel free to use whatever it is you need while we're gone!" I said, "Does that include your washer/dryer and the shower?" lol Her reply, "ABSOLUTELY!" There you go, Bean! :> )

The heater was almost done on Thursday evening but it was getting late and Skippy had to get to bed, so the sealing and connecting of the hoses would be left for Friday afternoon. Well, that morning, my sister came over to show me her "amazing find" at a yard sale. I told her about the heater so she wanted to see it. She walked into the laundry closet and all I heard was, "GET ME SOME TOWELS, QUICK!" One of the pipes had been dripping all night and went right into the holes on top of the heater and down into the inside of the casing unit. URGGHH! Now the heater had to be removed, taken apart, and air dried. SHEESH! Needless to say, Skippy was not a happy man! He was so angry, he didn't even want to go to Goose's graduation dinner, but as you can see by my last post, he finally did! YAY!

The heater was then taken apart and left on the front porch to dry for two days. (I'm sure my neighbors liked that! LOL) Sunday evening, after choir, Skippy finally was able to connect the hoses, so I went to all the sinks and showers and turned the hot water on to let the air out. All was going well until the heater filled with water and the pipes on top filled. That's when he realized he didn't glue two of the hoses together and they started leaking all over. (insert LOTS of yelling here) So again, everything was shut off, drained, and left to dry until yesterday.

My Skippy Man was fortunate to have an early day yesterday, so as soon as he got home, he went straight to work on the heater again, making sure EVERYTHING right and glued before he turned the water to the heater back on. At this point now, all the sinks and showers are running.......air is spattering.......water is running.........NO YELLING..........could it be...........do we really have......YES! YES! HOUSTON....WE HAVE HOT WATER!



And would you believe through all this there was NO COFFEE? This is what I woke up to yesterday morning................................

Thank you, Bean!

Aww........somebody loves me! :> )

P.S. Sorry there are no pictures but Bean had the camera taking pics while Tex was home on leave from Iraq.....I thought that was more important! :> )

Monday, September 27, 2010


On Friday evening, our family went out to celebrate with Goose on her outstanding achievement of receiving her Bachelor's Degree in Psychology. She has worked hard for this and we are all so very PROUD of her!

We had a wonderful time of food, fellowship, and fun. Oh, and laughter so hard we couldn't breathe. I had no idea my sons-in-law were stand-up comedians! lol

WAY TO GO, GOOSE. . . . .

Saturday, September 25, 2010

A Basket, Some Trivia, And A Quiz

The dog days of summer are just about over and the cooler temperatures of fall are approaching. For those of us who are welcoming it with open arms, (yes, that includes me) we are already pulling out the hoodies and the toe socks. Then there are those of you who are summer lovers, who are trying to fit in all the "last minute" warm weather activities. Regardless of whether you like warm or cool temperatures, rain or snow, there is always one thing you can do. . . . . Have a picnic!

My family LOVES to go on picnics to the park, the mountains, the backyard, or even our own living room, regardless of the weather. Picnics are a great way to bring family and friends together, no matter WHERE you are! We love making our own sandwiches, salads, and desserts to bring, but sometimes, it's a spur-of-the-moment thing and we may just run through KFC or stop and get pizza and take that with us. I think my favorite though is just cheese and crackers. Simple, but YUMMY! I don't think it really matters what you bring to eat or even what you bring it in, for that matter. . . . . . . . . . . just as long as it's something GOOOOOD! lol

So grab that picnic basket, bag, tote, or box, and get out there and ENJOY yourself!

  • The word picnic traces to the 1692 edition of a French book, where it was used to describe a group of people dining in a restaurant who brought their own wine. For a long time a picnic meant a meal that everyone contributed something to, similar to a potluck. Sometime during the Middle Ages, picnics became the enjoyable outdoor meals that we know of today. In the early 19th century in London, the Picnic Society was formed by a group of fashionable people for purposes of entertainment.

  • Did you know that in 2000 in France a 600-mile-long picnic took place from coast to coast? It was held to celebrate the first Bastille Day of the new Millennium.

  • After an ant has visited your picnic, it lays down a scent as it returns to the nest for the other ants to follow!

  • The record for the largest hamburger is held by Rutland, North Dakota. In 1982, the town made the World's Largest Hamburger, 3,591 pounds, which was consumed by some 8,000 people!

I thought I would post a picnic trivia quiz I found. I was surprised at some of the answers:

1. In the song, "Teddy Bear's Picnic," at what time do the bears have to leave to go home to bed?
a. 5 o'clock
b. 6 o'clock
c. 7 o'clock
d. The bears stay up all night.

2. Where does the word, "picnic" come from?
a. The French, "pique-nique," meaning something "of little importance."
b. The French, "pique-nique," meaning something small "of great importance."
c. It's a word first coined by Henry Ford in 1929.
d. The derivation is unknown

3. What happens in the movie, "Picnic at Hanging Rock?"
a. Three girls and one of their teachers on a school outing mysteriously disappear.
b. A couple taking a break from planning their upcoming wedding realizes they have nothing in common.
c. An elderly gentleman proposes to his girlfriend after 45 years together.
d. A group of behaviorally challenged young adults finds peace, love and laughter.

4. Who invented the hot dog?
a. The city of Vienna traces the lineage of the hot dog to the wienerwurst or Viennese sausage.
b. The city of Frankfurt traces the lineage of the hot dog to the frankfurter wurst, which it claims was invented in the 1480s.
c. Around 1870 on Coney Island, a German immigrant named Charles Feltman began selling sausages in rolls.
d. Anton Ludwig Feuchtwanger, a Bavarian sausage seller who is said to have started serving sausages in rolls at the World's Fair.
e. All of the above are valid claims.

5. What do they call a barbecue in South Africa?
a. barbie
b. barbecue
c. braai
d. baarb

6. On average, how often are Americans barbecuing in a month?
a. 2
b. 4
c. 5
d. 7

7. Which activity had the most reported injuries in 2006?
a. Brushing teeth or gargling
b. Reading
c. BBQ'ing
d. Stapling paper

8. Where is the oldest barbecue site in the world?
a. Israel
b. China
c. Namibia
d. South Africa

9. What is the percentage of men in the US that prepare and cook the food to be barbecued?
a. 33%
b. 48%
c. 66%
d. 78%

10. Which of the following is NOT one of the most popular foods at a US barbecue?
a. Ribs
b. Hamburger
c. Hot dog
d. Steak

11. What percent of grill owners own a charcoal grill?
a. 16%
b. 28%
c. 37%
d. 48%

12. When an ant finds the food at your picnic, how does it tell the other ants about it?
a. Back at the nest, it wiggles its body to communicate the location to the other ants
b. It lays down a scent as it returns to the nest for the other ants to follow
c. It returns to the nest and leads the other ants back to the food
d. Back at the nest, it communicates the location of the food by clicking its mandibles

13. Ants can carry up to ___ times their own body weight?
a. 5
b. 10
c. 20
d. 30

14. How many hot dogs and buns did Joe Chestnut eat in 12 minutes to claim the world record?
a. 26 ½
b. 32 ½
c. 46 ½
d. 59 ½

15. What is the record for the largest hamburger?
a. 563 pounds
b. 1,472 pounds
c. 3,591 pounds
d. 4, 356 pounds


1-b, 2-a, 3-a, 4-e, 5-c, 6-c, 7-d, 8-d, 9-c, 10-a, 11-d, 12-b, 13-c, 14-d, 15-c

Friday, September 24, 2010

Another Ten Minutes, Please!

One of the many blessings of homeschooling is that on those mornings where you just want to sleep in another ten minutes (or another 2 hours).....it can actually happen!

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Time Out For Mom

"Blessed be the LORD, because he hath heard the voice of my supplications. The LORD is my strength and my shield; my heart trusted in him, and I am helped."
Psalms 28:6-7

Do you wake up in the morning wishing you could just have a few hours or an entire day to yourself? (I know I do!) Imagine the possibilities with that amount of unscheduled time - you could read a book, soak in the tub, actually fold the clean clothes on the couch and put them away, polish your toes, weed the flower bed, window shop, take a friend you haven't seen in months to lunch, or spend a full hour with the Lord in prayer for your loved ones.

Every mother treasures moments for herself when they come, but the problem is that they rarely come on their own. If we want to stay emotionally and spiritually healthy, then we must make taking time for these moments a number one priority. Without them, we shrivel up and die within and each day can become one repetitious day after the next. The Lord Jesus Christ needed timeouts to get through His day (Luke 5:16). Often, He left the disciples and the crowds to be alone and find strength from His Heavenly Father. A wise mom will say no to the false guilt she feels for "stealing" a few hours for herself and learn from Christ's example. Besides, your children will enjoy their contented, happy mom.

Is today your day to rejuvenate and find yourself again? Don't wait for the help to fall from the sky, humble yourself and ask for it. Maybe you can call a close friend or neighbor and ask her if you can trade watching each other's children every other week. Maybe your parents or grandparents have promised to teach your children a new skill and today's the day to call in that promise. If you're homeschooling, maybe you could ask your husband to use half a vacation day and teach the children (don't worry; they'll still learn even if he doesn't teach them the same way as you!) God knows you can't do it all on your own. Trust Him for the right answer to help you take a "TIME OUT" for mom!

Here are a few ways you can allow yourself some private time each day, even if it is only a half hour:

  • Take a long walk
  • Buy a bouquet of flowers for yourself
  • Begin to develop an intimate circle of friends and family
  • Turn off the phone, and allow your answering machine to pick up your calls (having a hard time with this one!) lol
  • Put on your favorite music, turn it up loud, and dance
  • Call your best friend, and settle in with a hot cup of tea, for a good long talk (this is such an EASY one)
  • Snuggle up in bed with a good book (oh, I am so thinking about that right now!) lol
  • Sink into your tub for a long, luxurious soak at the end of the day
  • Indulge in getting (or giving) a massage
  • Snack on your favorite "comfort food" (YES! Time to make some taco soup)
  • Remember how you felt when you fell in love with your partner, and allow yourself to recreate that feeling (we try to every day. . . . .I LOVE MY SKIPPY MAN!)
  • Write a love letter (to your partner, children, parents, friends...)
  • Treat yourself to a manicure and a pedicure
  • Rent a great video
  • Start a gratitude journal, and express your thanks on a daily basis (great idea)
  • Go to the beach. Delight and bask in the warming rays of the sun (can I do this without the sand?) lol
  • Visit your favorite bookstore (you know, the one with comfortable chairs and a coffee shop) and spend the afternoon
Whether you choose something from this list or have some ideas of your own, I hope you are able to find time each day for some quiet time for yourself...........YOU ARE SO WORTH IT!

Father, Take my tired spirit and provide the moments I need to be filled with Your strength. Please send someone during the day that will help support me in whatever way I need. In Jesus' name, Amen.

List of "time out" suggestions for mom is courtesy of iVillage

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

I Am Blessed

THIS POST. . . . .

My sister has been dealing with Lyme Disease for about 9 months now and it has been a very long battle for her. Being diagnosed after it had taken a good hold of her, her recovery has been slow and very debilitating to say the least. She has been taking anywhere from 10 - 15 pills a day from anti-inflammatories to anti-biotics. She has been in so much pain and on some days, couldn't even make it out of bed.

I remember driving her to Harrisonburg one day for a blood test. On the way there, we were listening to 89.9 WPER, a local Christian radio station. C. turned to me and said, "Where's God now? Why isn't He getting me through this? Why isn't He taking this pain away from me?" She said she still believed that God was there, but had a hard time praising Him anymore. As soon as she said that, before I even had a chance to answer her, this song came on......................

Can you believe that?
God, you are AWESOME!

C. she is doing much better now. She still has days where she hurts greatly, but it doesn't even come close to the pain she HAD been suffering.

On my worst day, I try not to complain and try and remember....it could be so much worse. I thank God for those little aches and pains I have in my life. It reminds me that I am still ALIVE, and for that.......................


Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Our Funny Farm

My Skippy Man and I LOVE animals. We have a pug named Pheobe, three cats; Rascal, Simba, and Kitty, and two chinchillas; Baby and Mouse. Bean lives with us and she also has two Boston Terriers named Mugsy and Dexter. They are all so precious to me!

I love it when they come and sit on my lap, or Kitty climbing up on my shoulders, or rub their head on my chin, just wanting to have a little bit of attention and love. You should see it when Rascal comes into the kitchen and stands right in front of me, looks lovingly into my eyes, and then "CAT"-apults himself into mid air, hoping that I will catch him. I should really get a video of that for you to see. It is hysterically funny!

The only problem I have with my precious babies is that I can't turn around without tripping over one, sitting on one , closing one in the dryer, locking one in the linen closet, finding one in the hamper or in the dog food bin, or in the wood box for the stove. I have even opened up the pantry closet, only to find two eyes l@@king back at me. I would hate to think of where I might find Baby and Mouse if they ever got out of their cage!

All these things may be annoying sometimes, but they do make every day an exciting adventure..........................

I wouldn't trade them for the world!

Monday, September 20, 2010


I was talking with my friend, Bobbi awhile ago and she told me about how something Kiddo had said really made her laugh. That made me think of another time he came out with a really good one. My son is a plethera of comedic on-liners.

Well, one night we were sitting at the table eating dinner, talking about what had gone on during our day (no, not with our mouths full....wait a minute.....uh, yes, they probably were), Bean was talking about something that was of interest to her and in a nice, soft, quiet manner. Then all of a sudden, she started raising her voice and was getting very annoyed. Kiddo, without missing a beat looks up at her and blurts out.....................................................


Kids............you gotta love em'!

I Love It When. . . . . . . .

My Skippy Man leaves me little love notes around the house..................

I never know where one might turn up!

He sure does know how to put a smile on my face! :> )

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Promoted To Glory

Today we said goodbye to Tex's grandfather, Bob who was "Promoted To Glory" on Wednesday evening. He was a sweet, gentle man who loved his family dearly. It has been extremely difficult for Tex as he not only lost his grandfather who raised him, but he lost his precious friend.

This has been a very difficult day for them but they take comfort in knowing that our Heavenly Father is welcoming Bob into His arms saying........"Well done, my good and faithful servant!"

R.I.P, grandpa Bob.......We love you!
You will be greatly missed!

Grandpa Bob
May 1940 - September 2010

Saturday, September 18, 2010


I was reading "Woman's World" today and found a really great tip to power up your breakfast -- for FREE!

When you're down to the last bits in the jar of peanut butter....instead of tossing it into the recycling bin, turn it into an instant breakfast on-the-go! It's a new trend that's been dubbed OIAJ, or "oats in a jar."

Here's what you do...........Just add a scoop of instant oatmeal and any other ingredients you like (for instance nuts or raisins). When you're ready to eat, just add hot water, twist on the lid and shake! In a few seconds, you'll have a protein-packed breakfast without the clean-up mess!


Friday, September 17, 2010


Need a good chuckle? Please stop by Debbieo's at "Doing My Best For Him" and read her latest post!

Feelin' Frugal

Frugal living is not just about saving money...it's a way of life, and one that I wish we had started a long time ago. Cutting out things that are not a necessity, cooking from scratch, making your own detergents and household cleaners, using natural resources, etc.....the list of things we can do is ENDLESS! But the most important thing is that we know EXACTLY what is and is not in the food that we eat and the cleaners that we use.

When we first started practicing frugality, living within our means, almost 4 years ago, I went to the library and borrowed a bunch of books. Two of my favorites that I found were "Miserly Moms"

and "Frugal Living for DUMMIES" Both have a ton of ideas to cut costs and even recipes that I have tried that are delicious. One thing these recipes don't skimp on is TASTE!

Around our house, we make, rather than buy, as much as we can. Like I mentioned, we cook/bake as much as we can from scratch. We make our own breads, snacks, desserts, Bisquick baking mix, bread crumbs, apple pie spice, iced tea, grow and dry our herbs......if I can find the recipe, I'll make it! I used to re-use my coffee filters over again, but now I have a percolator and it does not use filters, it has a basket. WAHOO!

We use washcloths in place of napkins, grow our own vegetables, and go to pick-your-own farms for our fruit. When we do shop for things that we can't make or grow, we go to one of the two discount grocery stores in our area called Sharp Shopper or Aldi's. Also using coupons and comparison shopping is another way to save a great deal of money. You can also get on-line coupons that you can print out to take with you to many stores. My sister is the "discount code" queen! LOL

We also make our own laundry detergent/fabric softener, and household cleaning supplies. When I know I am running out of detergent, I wait until a day when we are grilling or cooking meat for the week to make more by using the hot coals from the fire. It doesn't take very long to do, so the coals are still good and hot after we finish and clean up from dinner. I only dry our clothes for about 4-5 minutes to get the wrinkles out, then it all goes out on the line or hung up in the house to dry. We also use hurricane lamps and candles for lighting as much as possible. I also wash and re-use our plastic storage bags as well.

There are so many things that you can do and so many different ways that we can cut costs around our homes that it is impossible to list them all. There are, however, a TON of resources available at your local library as well as on the internet. Word of mouth is also a good way. Ask your friends and neighbors if they have any money-saving-tips they would like to share with you, and vice versa.

The only thing it takes to live a "frugal lifestyle" is a little bit of your time. And if you do decide to live a more simple life, you will find out that the rewards are AMAZING!

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Chicken Q&A

Recently, some of my friends have been asking questions about our chickens so I thought I would get a couple of them together and do a Q&A post. I hope you will find some of this information useful!

I have included their links to their blogs so if you get a chance, stop by for a visit! :> )
Bevy @ "Livin' In Peace" said...

At the price of eggs right now you have a GOLD mine ... how many hens do you have and do you have a nesting box for EACH one or just 4 for 8 chickens?

Hey, Bevy ~ We have 7 hens right now, but only 6 are laying, although she should be starting soon. However, we are getting 6 eggs each day and I am so EGG-cited! lol (sorry, I couldn't resist!)

Most all the books and resources I have read so that you need one box for every 4 to 5 hens as the minimum, so your hens will feel comfortably laying in them. They should be big enough for your hen to stand in comfortably. Usually 12 x 12 x 12 inches is adequate, but building bigger is usually a good idea. We have had 3 eggs in one box in the mornings so it's nice to know they don't mind sharing. lol
Check out this clever idea for nesting boxes..........I wish I had thought of that!

Lisa @ "I'm At Home" said...

cool! I've always thought it would be neat to have chickens. :) Is a chicken and a hen the same thing?! And you must have a rooster? :)

Good question, Lisa ~ Chicken is a collective noun given to a group or flock. Over the life of a "chicken" it has many different names depicting the different stages of life. They all start out as chicks. A female chicken who is under a year old, and who has laid eggs for less than 6 months is called a pullet. After that, she becomes a hen.

As for the rooster......this is a common misconception. You don't need a rooster for your hens to lay eggs, only to fertilize the eggs to hatch them into baby chicks. Hens will lay just as many eggs whether there's a rooster around or not.

BloggerAutumn Mist @ "Chickens In My Kitchen" said...

Congratulations, you're doing really well! We had our first duck egg today. I wasn't expecting one until after Christmas really, they are very young and I thought the cold weather would put them off, but obviously not. And don't you find they taste so much better than shop bought?
Thank you, Autumn Mist! We are so blessed that they are doing so well. And CONGRATULATIONS to you as well on your first duck egg! :> ) I have found that so far, the temperature changes has not bothered our girls from laying. I have had to put the heat lamp on a couple of nights, but so far so good. As for the taste of the eggs, I have to say there really is such a big difference. The first time I made scrambled eggs with them, I was in HEAVEN! YUMMM!

Kat @ "Heart 2 Heart" said...

How long does it take for them to lay eggs? How old does the chicken have to be?

Kat, that is one of the first questions my friends ask me. I'm starting to wonder if they have some ulterior motive other than curiosity! lol

Chickens never lay more than one egg per day as it takes an average of 23-26 hours for it to develop. As a rule, chickens lay in the morning, but each day a little later. Sometimes the last egg of a series is produced in the early afternoon. When it gets too late, they take the next day off.

As for their age, chickens will start to lay at about 4 to 6 months old. They reach peak production at about 18 months and from there, production drops until they are about 3 years old. This is very general and varies with different breeds.

Thank you, ladies for your great questions. If you have any more, please feel free and let me know!

Wednesday, September 15, 2010


Hey, you......you reading this.....
You ARE Amazing!
You are the best!

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Home Made Fabric Softener.....You CAN Make It!!!

Hi, all! Or should that be, "Hi, Ya'll!" lol This entry is the companion post to home made laundry detergent..........Home made fabric softener. I have tried different recipes and I feel they all work about the same, so it will just be a matter of personal choice.

This is the recipe that I use and I really like it!

Home Made Fabric Softener

6 cups water

3 cups distilled white vinegar (this is what makes your clothes soft)

2 cups hair conditioner ( yes, that's right......hair conditioner)

I used an old plastic milk jug for this but you can use whatever you wish. I measured out 6 cups of warm water and put that into my milk jug. I then measured out 3 cups of vinegar into a glass my glass measuring cup, added my 2 cups of conditioner (I used one with a lavendar scent) and stirred them together making the conditioner easier to pour into the milk jug. Now shake. You will get some sudsing on the top, but that is ok. Just shake before each use. This WILL have a slight vinegar smell to it but don't worry, your clothes won't smell like it. I have added more water and less vinegar sometimes depending on the strength of the scent of the conditioner I use, because I have always HATED the smell of vinegar!!! And to think I have to use it in soooo many of my home made cleaning items. Go figure!

How do I use my fabric softener? I fill up an old pump detergent bottle, and I also use a spray bottle. It depends on the mood that I am in and whichever is closest to grab, but I do prefer the spray as it is easier to handle. I then take a wet wash cloth (which I normally have in the wash any way because I am FOREVER washing them) and I either squirt a little bit of softener on the cloth, or three pumps of the spray (this is called a re-usable dryer sheet). Then, if I am drying the load completely, I just toss it in the dryer and PRESTO......no static cling and my clothes smell fresh. If I am hanging them up/out like I normally do, I put the fabric softener in the rinse cycle, (I prefer to put it in the wash when I add my detergent so I won't forget it....hmmm....me forget something? lolol) and dry them in the dryer for 5 minutes before hanging them up to get the wrinkles out.

Well, there you have it........Home made fabric softener. See, you CAN make it!! Do you have a different recipe that you would like to share with us? Please feel free to do so. And if you try this recipe..........PLEASE Let me know what you think!! I really like it!!

P.S. I have also heard about wadding up three balls of aluminum foil and putting them in your dryer to eliminate static cling. I have not used it yet, but I am willing to give it a try. Now I will REALLY have a hard time keeping Kitty out of the dryer! R O F L O L !!

Sweet Pickle Relish

Yesterday, G-Girl came over for a coffee and canning date. Well, we started out at my house but we ended up at hers. Hey, haven't you ever heard of progressive canning? lol

We had a great time not only canning, but just catching up on what's been going on with each other. Bean even made us a broccoli and fetta fritata that was YUMMY!! (recipe and pics to come)

During our day we made 7 - 1/2 pint jars of jelly (recipe to follow) and 7 1/2 pints of relish using a recipe I got from "New Life On A Homestead" that I just HAD to try! We love relish and I use it for more than just on hot dogs. It is especially wonderful in my brown sugar sloppy joes or in chicken or tuna salad! Mmmm!

I doubled this recipe but instead of using 4 heads of celery, I only used 2.

For this sweet pickle relish recipe, you will need:

6-7 large unpeeled cucumbers (about 4 cups), diced
2 medium green bell peppers (about 1 1/2 cups), diced
2 heads celery (about 3 cups), diced
1/4 cup salt
3 1/2 cups sugar
2 cups white vinegar
1 tsp celery seed
1 tsp mustard seed

In a food processor,
finely chop the cucumbers, peppers, and celery, being careful not to grind them into puree. Pour the veggies into a large bowl and add your salt. Cover with water and let stand out of the way for about 5 hours.

After you have let them sit for the desired time, drain well, pressing the mixture to remove all the liquid. This part takes a little while, but be patient....you will love the results!

Combine the remaining ingredients in a large saucepan, and bring to a boil. Be careful not to take to deep a breath over the pot, the vinegar smell will get strong for a little bit. Continue stirring until all of the sugar has dissolved. Add the vegetable mixture to the saucepan, and simmer for 15 minutes.

Pack into hot, sterilized jars leaving 1/2 inch head space, always remembering to clean the rim of each jar to remove any relish that may prevent the jars from sealing properly. Process in a water bath canner for 10 minutes.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Did You Know?

Did you know that there is a substitution for an egg that you can be used in your baking? Before starting a recipe for cookies, cake, etc, combine 1 tsp. of unflavored gelatin with 3 tbsp. of cold water and 2 tbsp. plus 1 tsp. of boiling water. This mixture will substitute for 1 egg in a baking recipe.

Who'd a thunk?