Pioneer Woman at Heart
One Flourishing, Frugal and Fun Family!
One family learning to live off the land, cut back on expenses, and to live a simpler and a more self-sufficient lifestyle.
"Eat it up,
Wear it out,
Make it do,
Or go without."
~A Pioneer Sampler, by Barbara Greenwood~
Saturday, July 31, 2010
Friday, July 30, 2010
With so much physical work outside this summer, I've been too tired to concentrate on what I'm writing. Mixing up my routine doesn't seem to help either. I've tried writing before/after exercise, and before/after working in the garden, and way before the kids are out of bed. I just need to find that avenue I need to get back to where I was before summer.
It wasn't easy working in a stooped position, carrying a bag alongside me, to remove all the end/wet rot. I had talked to my husband, who in turn talked to his co-workers, who gave us a few tips. First, the bees will start to carry the fungus around, so it must be removed as soon as you see it. Most of his co-workers have, or are experiencing this with their squash. They also mentioned the calcium solution and to spray the leaves once a week.
I've heard 2:1 solution and I have read to mix it 1 cup with 9 cups of water. I've also read you can make a solution with baking soda. We are mixing our solution 1 cup milk to 9 cups water. Despite all that work, I did manage to make 2 more quarts of refrigerator pickles and picked about 30 cayenne peppers, which were frozen for winter.
Now, if I could just learn to have ripe tomatoes and ripe green/poblano peppers, when I have cilantro in the herb garden. It seems that once the tomatoes are ripe, my cilantro has already gone to seed.
Thursday, July 29, 2010
I'm heading back out to remove all the fungus/mold pieces in an attempt to save the garden.
Now I know what the pioneers felt like when they lost a crop to nature. I wonder what the calcium levels were in the ground back in the 1800's? Did they have this problem? Our soil today lacks many vital ingredients to a healthy garden.
Yesterday I made 3 quarts of refrigerator pickles and 1 1/4 quarts of homemade salsa. The salsa was a hit. I used a recipe from a library book I borrowed, and substituted ground coriander for fresh cilantro. With extreme heat here this year, my cilantro went to seed early. I also used a cayenne pepper from the garden instead of a hot chili pepper. It was a huge hit and they want me to make more today.
Monday, July 26, 2010
A came across another farm food blog, Farmgirl Fare, and found lots of recipes for my garden tomatoes.
Sunday, July 25, 2010
I'm also trying a new recipe to use a pint of my cherry tomatoes, letting nothing from the garden go to waste. I am baking Cherry Tomato Focaccia, which I located in the book, The Heirloom Tomato book, written by Amy Goldman. I am using organic agave instead of sugar for the recipe.
The kids, and my husband, keep asking if I am making another Zucchini pie. It must have left a good impression on them. They have asked for another one since they tasted it last night. Yea for allrecipes.com for their wonderful recipes.
Today is board game day, so Horse-opoly is on the table today. For those who were not interested in playing, they are reading books.
Saturday, July 24, 2010
Easy Layered Tomato Dip.
And today I have made a new recipe with zucchini. Zucchini Pie with Crumb Topping. Although my pie does not look anything like the one on the recipe photo, we will be digging into it for a family tasting. I'll be back to give you an update.
Friday, July 23, 2010
I'm about to take the garden hose to the girls because they are getting ornery. The heat is making the bees go crazy too. My 11 year-old daughter got stung by one just sitting still today.
The dogs aren't the only ones we worry about in this heat. Thanks to the wonderful information from my farmgirl sisters, I have found out that our chickens can die from heat exhaustion. We have a fan running in the barn and have even given them bowls of crushed ice.
The barn cats are cooling under shaded plants and won't come out until the rain cools the air.
The garden has blessed us yet again, so many meals are planned when the temperature drops. Including my mother's zucchini bread. Yum! I'm not turning on my oven until the rain arrives. I am seriously considering the costs of a summer kitchen. It would work perfect for us during hot summer days.
Ice cold sliced watermelon sounds pretty good for dinner right now.
Wednesday, July 21, 2010
The kids have given her a name because we can't just say "come dog" etc. When my daughter found her she was starving and dehydrated. She will lay down beside the water bowl, place her paws (one on each side) around the bowl, and rest her chin on the opposite rim of the bowl and covering it. Almost acting afraid that we'd take the water away, making us wonder what had happened to her previously.
Now that she knows we won't take her water or food away, she is content. She will even go inside the crate to take a nap during the day. She's free to go where ever she wants and is never taken outside without a leash. Luckily, we still had some out grown collars, so one went on her. We went out and bought her puppy food and a few toys.
If no one calls, she may very well be the newest, and permanent, member of our homestead.
Monday, July 19, 2010
There is no end to utilizing my herbs, eating healthy, and saving money. I can't wait to mix up another dry herb mix.
Saturday, July 17, 2010
They looked over my bookshelves and found my book, 50 Ways to Pamper Yourself, by Stephanie Tourles. I think I picked this book up for under $1.00 at a thrift store. They looked it over and found face mask recipes and other soaks that require herbs and even items from our garden such as zucchini.
I'm glad they are finding things to do this summer. Even if it means using my veggies and herbs for other purposes.
Friday, July 16, 2010
Tuesday, July 13, 2010
Monday, July 12, 2010
The butterflies love our flowers. And so do the bees. I was able to get a photo of one of them. Yesterday I saw one with blue and black on the backside of the wings, and when they were closed up, they outside (underside) of the wings were orange and black.
I've already weeded the flower beds and have picked more cucumbers. I read that if you pick them in the early morning hours, they have a better flavor. After weeding, and while laundry is washing, I came inside and scrambled some farm fresh eggs with snipped chives.
Speaking of food, I made the most delicious yellow squash recipe I found on the Internet - Yellow Squash Patties. The only thing I would change, is maybe use sharp cheddar cheese for more flavor, and maybe Parmesan cheese. The kids loved them and hubby stole the leftovers and took them to work for his lunch. I am sure I'll have more squash today.
We did top our patties with a thin layer of sour cream. I used olive oil and I used cornmeal that we bought at a working flour mill (no preservatives). I also have whole wheat flour from the mill too. Very delicious. If you are looking for new recipes, and recipes that use a lot of yellow squash, this one is one to try.
Saturday, July 10, 2010
summer vegetable spaghetti sauce to pour over organic whole wheat noodles. The recipe is in the Cardiac Recovery Cookbook. The recipe I linked it too is the exact same recipe I have, but on another Web site.
For a side, I pulled beets and roasted them with onions, olive oil, dried thyme and fresh sprigs of rosemary (from the herb garden of course). Sprinkled with sea salt. YUM! I absolutely love these.
To my excitement, I found an antique 2 qt. jar with metal clasp for $4.00 (perfect for refrigerator pickles) and 2 limited edition peanut cans for $.25 each. When I got home I made myself a new homemade pin cushion with one of them.
The breeze is blowing in through the windows wonderfully today, so I'm taking an iced tea and going to do some reading. I'm on vacation today, so no more housework.
Friday, July 9, 2010
Thursday, July 8, 2010
Yesterday, after I picked cucumbers, I started looking for different ways to cook them or healthy toppings. I remembered, that on the movie "Julie & Julia" she made braised cucumbers. So, I am on the search for many recipes, with the goal to not let anything go to waste in the garden. I have to say that movie really influenced me on trying new recipes.
I even sliced one cucumber up, cooled it in the fridge and used them to cool our eyes. Temperatures were up to 94°F here and extremely humid. We did end up eating those too - ha ha ha! However, if you have never place cooled cucumbers on your eyes, you are really missing out on a at-home spa treatment. It felt great!
Wednesday, July 7, 2010
Tuesday, July 6, 2010
Sunday, July 4, 2010
We pulled 2 medium Kohlrabi, 1 red onion, 1 green pepper and 1 yellow squash. I made the Kohlrabi and Squash Empanada recipe you'll find in over in the "New Foods Tried" portion of my blog. I changed the recipe up a bit to accommodate what was ripe in the garden today. It was the first time for us to taste Kohlrabi and it was delicious. We loved it and can't wait to make more recipes with it. Everything but the garlic and ginger, in the recipe, came from our garden (and the pie crust of course).
Friday, July 2, 2010
$22.00 earned from selling homemade macrame jewelry at an event
$12.00 earned from the summer library program for reading books
Amount still needed: $545.00
It's been a difficult journey. We'll see what happens over the next month.
My 16 year old daughter made this delicious quesadilla by using up leftover "refried beans." The day before, I soaked and dried a bag of pinto beans, added onion and seasoning and mashed them. We make lots of recipes with these "refried beans."
She diced up green and red peppers and sauted them with onion in olive oil. Then added the leftover beans and placed them in between two whole wheat tortillas. After that was heated completely, she topped it with cheese slices (and these are not Kraft slices), sprinkled it with chili pepper and added a dallop of sour scream. Then she added snipped, home grown, green onion.
Man these were good! She needs to come up with a name for her new recipe. She's been having fun in the kitchen, especially when bordem strikes.
Of course, they don't tell me they are bored so often any more. If I hear them say it, they are immediately assigned a cleaning job - any job that needs done.