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.

Adopted Motto

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

Sunday, April 30, 2017

Taste Test: Pickled Asparagus ~ Early Birthday Presents

Hubby and I played hookie yesterday, and almost forgot to open a jar of our pickled asparagus.  At 9pm, we were tasting it.  Yum!  Crunchy and a delicious side dish or snack.  More of a snack for me, ha ha! 

It rained, and it was cold yesterday.  Too cold to get the Harley out.  So....

Saturday, April 29, 2017

Exercise ~ Water Glassing Eggs ~ Lilacs

I'm feeling much better, and back to my 60 minute walks.  I am picking up the pace some days, so I can get somewhere between 3 and 3 1/2 miles in now.  That's not all, I still lift weights, do 1/2 push-ups (getting back on track), and of course my yoga stretches.  It takes time in my morning, but like Hubby said, it's worth it.   

I just have to get up earlier, and in hopes to return to the 4:30am gym visits.  I finally put my new speed bag up, so it's time to start moving stuff out of the garage and purging in there too.  And this is all before I do my chores. And the weight loss number has not changed (frustrated, but I may be building muscle now).

Rain was not arriving until evening on Friday, so I headed outside to work there. I picked up tree debris racking up over 16,000 steps on my fitbit (by 7pm).

Friday, April 28, 2017

Nettle ~ Black Eyed Pea Spread ~ Gratitude

I harvested another huge pot of stinging nettle yesterday.  Before the rain arrived.  It's been a very good year for me to actually get things done in a more timely fashion.  I hope to harvest more.

I got out there early, before the bees woke up.  We have bees everywhere right now.  

I picked more than would fit in the dehydrator, so I blanched the rest for the next breakfast or pasta dish.  Nettle can be used in any dish you would use spinach or other greens.  Did you know 1 cup of cooked nettle contains 428mg of calcium?  Dandelion, 1 cup boiled contains 147mg of calcium.  According to the internet, those are the figures I found.  Hm.  A huge difference. No wonder my teas helped my hair and nails. 

What's on the breakfast plate?

Thursday, April 27, 2017

Random Tidbits

I woke up yesterday to find out it would get up to 83°F.  I had no idea until I read an email from Mom.  Golly.  I high tailed outside to water everything, then right back to the chicken coop for a good cleaning. 

The ladies will be in their coop for the next few rainy days.  Hubby and I have to put the run back in.  Yikes.

One lady was refusing to leave.  I was okay with that.  She looks like she was giving me the "stink eye" while I worked, ha ha!

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Wonky, fra-dazzled day....

I started the day by skipping my work out one more time.  I just thought another day of resting up was in order.

After working outdoors, which seemed rather short, I gravitated to the kitchen.

The night before must have started something, or it's these meds that are making me feel wonky.  I had to rip out an entire, almost completely done, knitted dishcloth.  I have no idea where I messed up, nor how.  I have made quite a few, and this was not such a happy moment.

Back to yesterday. . .

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Garden ~ List Making ~ Car Repairs

I put on my big girl panties and just pushed through the sinus headache and sore throat I had.  I planted carrots, beets, french breakfast radishes, and cherry belle radishes.  Watered everything with rain barrel water, and the rain is once again in the forecast for the weekend.

I am making a new "rainy day" list for this weekend.  I plan on getting more deep cleaning done.  I have also left my "office" area a mess.  It's "messy house" time of year if you grow a garden (for me anyway).  I have papers to file, library books to at least look through and return, a table to clear off, and the walnuts are lurking....

My tomatoes look great.  Hubby had his doubts.  The last time we grew plants from seeds (we used a front room  window) the plants didn't grow tall nor produce well.  Also, my cats kept eating them.

Monday, April 24, 2017

Happy Homemaker Monday

Joining up with Sandra at Diary of a Stay at Home Mom - Happy Homemaker Monday!  Even though I don't feel so happy today.  Or should I say positively energetic?  Maybe after I post, I'll start to feel better.  I haven't had time to do any baking lately, and have absolutely no idea what dinner will be yet.  I may be PB & J on the porch.  That is the reality of homesteading.  And raising kids. 

What's on the breakfast plate. . .

Leftover pumpkin pancakes with dandelion syrup.  I didn't make these with einkorn flour.  One of the girls made them for us.  Next time I will.

Pickled Asparagus ~ Sunday Clean Up

Asparagus is up, and I have wanted to try pickling some for several years.  We are getting more each year, so this year the new canning recipe is.....

...Pickled Asparagus. I'll be tasting it in a weekI used the recipe found in the above borrowed cookbook titles "Pickled." I have a ton of sticky notes marking many more to try.  

However, there is an error in the recipe.

Sunday, April 23, 2017

Dogs ~ More Planting ~ Asparagus Leftovers

Updated photos to share:  Zuri - mountain cur mix

King - black lab/German Shepherd mix

 Jesse (the oldest) a completely unknown mix, possibly beagle and husky.  He belongs to the daughter moving out.  we asked her if we get "grand parent" visits.  I know he'll miss us.

Saturday, April 22, 2017

Wild Weeds ~ Cleavers ~ My Herbal Journey ~ Ticks

I harvested some wild growing cleavers this past week.  I have been pulling these from the flower beds for years, and had no idea they were a weed to keep.  Golly.  I learn something every year.

These are also called "sticky weed."  You may have them too.  You know, those annoying weeds that stick to everything?  Well, my lymph nodes were swollen and ginger and lemon wasn't kicking it's butt.

Friday, April 21, 2017

King-tastrophre #263 ~ Calendula and Shea Butter Lip Balm

King has pulled another "king-tastrophe." He is my least favorite dog and will remain on that list until I get over what he did.  Ugh.

I hurried out the door with Zuri on a leash, and Jesse.  No different than any other day.  I typically take King first, because he does his business rather quick.  Yesterday, I took Zuri first.

I went back to the door and guess what?  That #@*# dog, jumped on the knob and locked me out.  I had no phone, all of the vehicles gone for the day, no keys, entire house was locked up as tight as Fort Knox, and I had one screwdriver and a metal no-trespassing sign to work with.  I debated to get the ladder and climb to check the second story windows, but put the ladder back.  Too risky.  Something just told me don't do it.  I knew exactly which window I'd break if it came down to that though.

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Weeds ~ Chickweed Tincture ~ Whiskey Butter ~ Asparagus ~ Garden Planting Starts

I have been weeding the rose bed, which may get all torn out and roses moved.  Every year one particular rose plant in one area dies.  I think they get more shade than sun, so I may have to re-think what I'll plant there for color.  Anyway, I had a good amount of chickweed, cleavers and dandelions in that bed too.

I got all of them into the dehydrator for other uses, including facial cleansers, and even got a bit of dandelion root dried.

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Garden Beauty

Although I already posted this photo, here are just a few more....some of these were taken last week or so.

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Hiccups Continue ~ Barn Roofing Installed (or not)

He he, ha ha, ho ho.....looney bin do not suck me in....

Monday, Hubby pulled a double-whammy on me.  Just after he got to work, he called and said he had barn roofing and was on the way home.  I had planned to take it easy (ha ha ha!)

To gear up for the work, I had infused a nettle/mullein/oat straw tea and added juice of a lemon. My throat needed all the help it could get.

He arrived. We hooked the lift to the borrowed truck, ripped out some of the chicken run fencing, and ever so gently backed the lift in by the animal barn.  We cut the roofing to fit (or so we thought we did), got it in the lift, and sent Hubby up.

Only the battery wasn't charged.  We forgot to charge it overnight, in all our excitement.

Monday, April 17, 2017

A Tree Felling Story

Hubby told me last Tuesday, the he reserved a lift for Easter weekend. I was shocked.

This is my best friend this morning - coffee.  We've been sleeping pretty good, and will be for a week or two yet.  Grab a cup of your favorite beverage.  This is a rather long post.

Friday, April 14, 2017

Gettin' outside ~ Garden provides

In between garden work, I am slowly bringing the front porch to life again.  

Meals have resumed on the porch most days.  This particular day was a tad chilly, but I got out there anyway.

Thursday, April 13, 2017

Wild Weeds ~ Dandelion Syrup

The recent rain brought us some of these golden goodies. It's dandelion season.

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Bird watching and other fasicnating fun. . .

My to-do list was so long on Monday (washed rugs, rags, bed quilt, bathrobe etc.), I woke late on Tuesday.  Literally.  I overslept by an hour the next morning.  Sigh.  I knew I was pushing too hard.  I took the day off on Tuesday, as it rained anyway, so I couldn't work outdoors. Or so I thought.

Monday, April 10, 2017

Happy Homemaker Monday

Just to keep things real, I'm joining Sandra at Diary of a Stay at Home Mom.  It's Happy Homemaker Monday!

The weather. . .
It's cloudy, but very nice.  Rain is on the way tonight.  It's too wet to weed even yet today.

Planting has started. . .

We picked up some supplies recently, and got to work (again). 

Extra blocks were needed for raising the rain barrels a tad higher.  I couldn't get my bucket under them, nor a hose on them easily, as low as they were.

Sunday, April 9, 2017

Amazing Friday ~ Re-Purpose ~ Random Homestead Happenings

Hubby took the day off work on Friday, so we could get an important appointment completed.  It worked out well.  One of my cousins flew in from CA, and brought her partner.  Somehow, we got almost everyone together in one place and had lots of laughs and had a wonderful dinner. Photos were taken, and it was sad to depart.  Hubby and I even got a motorcycle ride in as well.

I decided to recycle a bathroom stand (no longer needed) by spray painting it.  It was a "dust collector" for bathtub salts etc.  Those are now stored in a wooden box on the tub ledge.  Less to dust.

Friday, April 7, 2017

Vanilla ~ Muffins ~ Pampering Myself

Homemade vanilla extract was refilled.  I go through it very quickly at this homestead.  However, as gardening season sets in, I won't have all this time to bake with (probably a good thing).

Enjoying another batch of homemade English muffins.  These don't have a lot of "nooks" and "crannies" but they are delicious.  The trick is to only knead the dough a few minutes to keep it soft.

And just so you know I am taking time for myself, and pampering myself I took that last glass of bubbly (from the pea dish night) and took it to the bathroom.... 

....and had a nice relaxing soak in the tub with essential oils.  I had some candles burning and rejuvenated my body and soul. Momentarily.

Today's it's back to that tile floor.  

Or not.

Thursday, April 6, 2017

Random Tidbits ~ Fruit Trees ~ Car Shuffle ~ Peas, Bacon and Prosecco

Something new for the homestead - three rooster door pulls.  Love them!  They went on the master bath cabinet doors.

Something harvested at the homestead - stinging nettle.  I filled the dehydrator, but will need to cut more for "greens" for the freezer this spring.  

I took a walk out to the fruit trees.  I am happy to report that all trees have buds, and the peach tree has teeny tiny pink blossoms about to bloom.  I'm thrilled to see most of the fungus is gone on the plum tree, so my homemade neem spray is working.  My elderberry trees actually have leaves on them already.  The grape plants are budding, and I will have to buy one grape plant to replace the one that died last year.   

We are still playing the car shuffle.  Daughter's car is not fixed.  We now know the problem, but the other problem is the labor involved.  It's about an 8 hour job with her engine.  We got one quote of $800 or $900.00.  We then located another person who might do it, and they did not want to mess with it.  Finally, we found one other person, and hope we can finally put an end to this car shuffle.  I can't run to the store for stamps, chicken feed, etc. And some folks in this house have bad memory (not saying who, ha ha!). Although Vet-Tech-Daughter texted me and asked if she could pick anything up for me.  That was nice of her.

Update on the car shuttle.  I wrote this post last night, but Hubby worked over, so he never got home until after 8pmHe rolled in with a flat tire, in the pouring down rain.  And, the guy called him back about Daughter's car  -  estimate $1,000.00 (more problems than we thought).  He's calling around for a new engine.  Daughter just paid off her car too.  Sigh.....the kids that have moved out have the other half of our garage filled.  Yeah, so changing a tire isn't going to happen in the rain.  And Daughter has exams and is driving my car.

Before roasting
After roasting

. . .using up a bit of last year's rosemary.  I love to cook with it.  It smells like a real Christmas tree and that makes me happy.

I made Giada's (recipe is online) Peas, bacon and Prosecco (Italian white wine).  I loved it.  Just one more way to cook my peas.

And who doesn't want to try a new wine with dinner?  
 Pork chops with homemade condensed mushroom soup. Mmmmm!

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Visiting Blog Drafts ~ Homemade Facial Toner

I am going through old blog drafts that didn't make the cut for some reason or another.  I found this one from May of last year.  It's sort of funny too.  

Check out the magazine recipe to the left!  It's the nettle hair tonic I made recently (only without essential oils), only this recipe states to leave the tea in and not rinse it out.  Although it's been about two weeks, I'll be leaving it in my hair from now on.

The rest of this is a draft from last year:

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Kitchen Madness ~ Tea Infusion Facial Cleanser

While yogurt was being made in the dehydrator, I put a few turkey breasts into the crock pot with some home canned hot pepper mustard sauce. 

 Monday's need to be simple, so sides were quinoa/dandelion greens and garden beets from the freezer.
This was also our first spring dinner on the porch.  I brought two rockers and a table out of storage.  He he. Well a woman has to have a place to rest after a long day of cleaning, and soon to be gardening, right?

Monday, April 3, 2017

Spider Webs be Gone!

The weather here has been rain.  Rain, and more rain.

I've had a slight blurp in my blogging lately.  There are many reasons for it.  One, Hubby called me one day, and whisked me off for a half-day vacation day.

Two, I took a day for a Mom/Daughter day out.  And it was