Pioneer Woman at Heart

One Flourishing, Frugal and Fun Family!

One mother making ends meet and surviving today's recession by writing. One family learning to live off the land, cut back on expenses, and to live a simpler and a more self-sufficient lifestyle.

Adopted Motto

"Eat it up,
Wear it out,
Make it do,
Or go without."
~A Pioneer Sampler, by Barbara Greenwood~

Saturday, December 5, 2020

Yakking and Babbling

 The metal sign I bought for my husband for Christmas, ha ha!

Miss Thelma continues to lay eggs in the feeder.  I'm going to buy a shower cap to place over the top, or go see if I have a piece of wood large enough to cover the top.  Crazy chicken.

I'm trying to convince (motivate) my husband to go pick up the dog fencing this weekend.

I was going through old photos, and had scanned this recipe for a drink called the Bahama Mama.  Yes I went to the Bahamas.  One time in my life, with a sister.  It was what they call "Fam" trips, short for Familiarization Trip.  I tried to take these trips often when the offer was given.  These were specially priced trips for Travel Agents to visit and do hotel tours we could know more about what we were selling.  Fun times for sure.  Can you tell I was on the "procrastination station" way too much yesterday, ha ha!

Oh, I almost forgot.  I finished one ornament.  It's made out of a wooden clothespin.  To see it, go to my S.C.R.A.P. Blogspot.

Today's blog post title couldn't be more accurate (ha ha!).  Nothing really exciting.  The dogs are not liking that it's shotgun week.  The farmer must have given permission to hunters to hunt the woods behind us that run along the river.  The shotgun blasts are making bark.

Yesterday's concoction - organic coffee, homemade hot chocolate, and a splash of candy cane organic syrup.

Friday, December 4, 2020

Positive Mojo ~ Joy ~ Happiness

A lot has been downhill and downright frustrating, mentally exhausting . . .2020.

I need to post this for a reminder to myself.  Hope you enjoy it.

What gives me joy and what was good about 2020.

We got the privilege to go to Daytona Bike Week in Florida (first time for us).  Good friends of ours trailered our motorcycles (things started to shut down the day we left FL).

We got 3 trips to our favorite island (talk about isolation in a good way).

We got many motorcycle rides in.

We (husband and I) got to take a trip to the Thumb of MI, and take a boat ride to see turnip rock etc.

I love snail mail.  It makes me smile and gives me happiness. A mug rug I received from Mama Pea one year (and still use it year round). I have received many other items as well.  I love to send surprise snail mail too, just to make someone's day.

Handwriting letters or getting hand written letters gives me joy, but lately it's been just quicker (gulp) to use the computer and print letters out.  Especially if I have a lot to talk about.

(don't worry about that email being on there, it's a very old one and gone)

I love to write, but haven't been doing it this year.  I found a copy of the newsletter I used to write way back in the day.  You may have to big-a-fy-it to read it.  Finding it gave me joy, as it was a time I looked forward to writing it each month and taking it to places where I was permitted to.

Baking.  Baking gives me joy.  I took this photo a few days ago, just before it went into the oven.  I haven't made them in many years.  Guess you forgot to add the cinnamon?  He he!  So I made pecan rolls as Hubby said.  They were still good, but I must make them again.  Just a long process, longer than I remember.

Handmade crafting.  Handmade Christmas ornaments were a yearly project I looked forward to.  I typically made them each January and had them done way before Christmas.  I love to research a new project to sell too.  I keep a list of what might be a good item to make and sell.

Reading gives me joy.  I've had a tough time at being in the "right" mood to read this year.  I have started back with reading my daily devotionals.

Dressing up for a date night with my husband. 

Working alongside my husband.  Seriously.  We work well together.  Whether cutting wood, building something, or gardening.  

There is probably a lot more I am just not clearly thinking of right now, but there was a few goodies that happened this year.  Praying for a better year next year.  The negative obviously outweighed the good this year, but there was some good. Just writing this out, I was back to working on ornaments yesterday, and reading a few of my herbal books.

I guess I better get a planner ordered.  I need to start planning for 2021.  Stay well friends.  Mentally and physically.

Thursday, December 3, 2020

December Thoughts

First year we didn't make one trip to Amish country.  The hotel has sent me deals via text many times this year.  

First year we never got to go camping.

Went to way too many funerals this year.

I didn't get to go to the library one time this year.  Not once.  First shut down, no car, and no one to pick up or drop off.  I loved going to the library for craft books, fiction books, reference etc.  I really miss the library.  I think I was one of their biggest supporters.  I don't even know why I had that Rosemary Gladstar book in the pile.  I own a copy, ha ha!

Pandemic year kept us all inside almost all of the year, with very little visits to Mom and Dad, and away from extended family and friends. Isolation, depression, and feeling like we are dragging all day long.  Add to that state mandates and restrictions forced upon us.

Thankful for what we did get from the drought-year garden, but what a stressful time keeping it watered.

I haven't journaled in my regular journal all year.  In a way it may be a good thing, as I would be writing negative stuff that I would have to repeat over and over.

No vehicle has forced to me to shop online.  I ordered a pair of earrings for one daughter and they sent me something else.  Ordering online has become a pain in the rump.  Items are either not available due to the earlier shutdown, or parts I need, or items are over priced. I have been having difficulty finding yarn I need when I do get a vehicle.  Just a frustrating year.

Now we are in the month of December.  Christmas has always been my favorite holiday.  I loved decorating, making handmade gifts, shopping, zip has left my zap. I don't know how to get it back, but won't stop trying.

I'm putting together a post with what makes me happy or gives me joy next.  Thinking it's important to do this.  Especially this year.


Wednesday, December 2, 2020

Miss Thelma's Shenanigans ~ New Recipes Tried

My mornings are spent sipping coffee, stoking the fire, and listening to the snow plows hard at work outside.  It also has me thinking it's time to get back on the treadmill in the mornings (haven't had the motivation lately).

In case you missed the post, I caught Miss Thelma inside the feeder the other day.  Well, I went out yesterday after putting spikes on my muck boots, shoveled off 4 inches of snow and ice off the ramp (not easy with rungs on it either), to fetch eggs and feed/water the chickens.

I happened to look down inside the feeder (which when I am standing on the ground looking in, I have to tip it sideways).  She laid eggs in there.  They are confused as to where to lay eggs.  I'm going to have to build something so they feel like they are crawling inside something (in the sides of the coop).

Dinner - two new recipes.  Up  top is sweet potato/lentil stew, and below is Skillet bread.  Both are online - stew is from Taste of Home, and bread is from I Heart Eating.  Both were delicious. Sorry for the bad photos, it's been dark in the house with the cloudy skies and snow lately.

Tuesday, December 1, 2020

. . . from the handiwork journal

I apologize for the bad photos.  It was snowing and dark outside.  Not great for picture taking indoors.

. . .got the crochet part of Mom's Christmas present done.  Just have to sew the inner part - it's a heatable wrap.  The inner part will be made using an old bed sheet for the fabric.  I haven't decided if I will fill the inner bag with just rice or mix it with lavender.  

. . .so far on the cardigan.  I hope it fits her when it's done. I put a crochet hook in one of the "invisible" pockets (worked from bottom up).

. . .crocheted pieces for 5 red truck ornaments.  Just have to sew them together. 

. . .started on a purple set to sell (hopefully before Christmas)

I'm working on some ornaments as well.  I've lacked the motivation, but going through scrap items I have to come up with more ideas.


Tuesday Tidbits

Yesterday morning I piddle-dinked away on the procrastination station (computer). I picked out some new recipes to try, printed out a crochet pattern, and after 15 attempts to get the wood stove fired back up, I finally went out to the barn to retrieve cut barn wood boards for kindling.

Although I said yesterday that I'd take the day slow, I decided to wash bedding, remake the bed.  Boy oh boy, was Tiger mad at me - kept meowing until the bed was remade (ha ha ha!).

It'll be the first year my husband and I won't exchange gifts.  We would like to buy ourselves a new TV (if the price is right).  We are gifting the girls that are living here, and one has a birthday just before Christmas.  No gift card buying either.  I'm afraid I'd get them for each, and the business could close from another shutdown (local winery, brewery, gift shops etc).

My dehydrated onions came in handy yesterday for dinner prep.  I didn't want to cut a fresh onion for only 3 Tbsp.  Here is how I made them (BBQ Turkey Cutlets)

6 turkey breast cutlets


1/4 cup organic sorghum molasses

1/4 cup Bragg's organic apple cider vinegar

1 - 4 oz. home canned ketchup

3 Tbsp. Worcestershire sauce

1 tsp. garlic salt (see note below)

3 Tbsp rehydrated, dehydrated diced onion, drained

2 Tbsp. organic light brown sugar

1/4 tsp. organic black pepper

Place cutlets in a crock pot, pour mixture over and cook on low for 4 hours.  I served ours with organic wild rice, but you could use any rice or even quinoa.

Note - Garlic salt:  Mix 1 Tbsp. homemade garlic powder with 3 Tbsp. salt.  Store in a spice jar.

Monday, November 30, 2020

Happy Homemaker Monday

The porch is fully loaded with split wood for the upcoming colder nights this week. We also moved the splitter inside the barn, and more wood, so we can split wood despite any weather.

We got more stuff taken off the porches and put in storage, all garden hoses put away (I use a lot to get out to the gardens). Got Youngest's car fixed.  Thankfully, she did not blow the transmission.  Got the larger air conditioner out and put in storage (been after Hubby for a few months on that job).

I'll try and remember to post an update on handiwork.  I'll have time this week, as the snow and rain are keeping us inside for now.

I'm finally back to cooking.  Since the passing of my Dad, I had zero motivation/mental capacity to cook or bake.  We had no meal after the service, nor any meals delivered from friends/family (we lived on take out).  First dinner we had was a ham, potatoes and corn.  The family is elated.  As for baking?  Well, that may happen in a week or two.

Today I am joining Sandra at Diary of a Stay at Home Mom.  I'll link up when she posts.  I need to run out to the barn and fetch kindling.  

The weather outside is . . .

40°/27°F, Raining early this morning, turning to snow, with 1 inch expected.  Snow all day Tuesday.

On the breakfast plate this morning . . . 

Omelet with sausage and cheese, coffee.

As I look outside my window . . .

Cloudy, dreary, raining, cold

As I look around the house . . .

My front room is a mess, but one daughter can't lift her laundry basket and take it upstairs with her hand healing either.  I'll try and help take stuff upstairs for her.

What I am wearing . . .

As of posting this, pajamas, robe and slippers.

To do today or this week . . .

Taking it easy today.  Long mentally/physically exhausting week.

For the week?

-split wood

-clean masterbath

-vacuum carpets

-extreme clean the kitchen hutch 

Currently reading . . .

I haven't picked out a book, but will be posting in a day or two.

On the TV this week . . .

Night Shift on Netflix

On the menu . . .

-BBQ turkey cutlets, crockpot veggies

-Sweet potato/lentil soup

-Crockpot Chicken Tikka Masala and Basmati Rice (new recipe to try, including homemade garam masala)

-white bean and ham soup, homemade bread

-a healthy breakfast dish with greens for the next few days

Something to share . . .

A story about my Dad.  When I was raising 3 kids as a single parent, and helping build my first home (Habitat house), I was a full time travel agent.  I was going on 10 years of that profession, when a woman was hired, did a dirty deal on my boss (a boss who I absolutely loved ), got her demoted and moved to another store, and didn't like me because I could sell travel better than her (never pushed higher priced packages and we were on commission), and I would go home with headache after headache, hating my job . . .I got sick of it and literally walked out.  When I told Dad, he smiled, raised his hands in the air and said, "Hallelujah!" (Mom said, go back and get your job back).

Biggest risk I ever took, but I found a job within 30 days, made twice as much money, holidays off, weekends off, where I met my current husband (he worked maintenance and I was an office girl). and now married 22 years and 6 kids, 3 grandkids (one passed).  

Favorite photo from the camera . . .

Just a dog and his wine bottle.

Prayers, Inspirational quotes, Devotionals . . .

Continuing to pray for our K (21 year-old) and her hand to heal quickly and good recovery, for Youngest (Romeo is no longer with us, and I am not sharing details, just know she is in a very mentally stressed state), for our daughter with Covid, our nephew with Covid, Our state, my family and health, Mom (she's been mentally worried since Dad passed), any personal requests.