February – – Let’s Try this Again

Here’s what I’d like to have accomplished by the end of February.  Now January was a bust, so we’ll have to see if I can do a little better this month.

I baked: a great batch of scones
I preserved: my kiwi harvest
I tidied: the cupboards and chests in the living room
I deep cleaned: the washer and dryer
I purged: the video collection
I stockpiled: water?
I handmade: a batch of soap
I mended/fixed: the loosen pieces on the little blue and white quilt
I planted: some seed starts in the greenhouse
I harvested: maybe some herbs
I tried: my first sourdough lessons
I read: The Fifth Wave  and part of the Voltaire that I picked up at the thrift sop
I made a great meal of: all vegetables
I finally tackled: my spinning wheel

Posted in February 2016, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

January Goals – :{

On My…… I didn’t do very well on my January goals.  Maybe a few will have to spill over to February. A nasty bout of lingering bronchitis brought things to a screeching halt for the second half of the month.

I baked: a great batch of scones – Nope, but I did make my first loaf of sourdough with my new starter.
I preserved: my kiwi harvest – Still in the fridge in the garage
I tidied: the laundry room – maybe today?
I deep cleaned: the washer and dryer – Nope
I purged: the yarn I will not use – I did do this, it went off to the high school knitting club
I stockpiled: rice and beans – Some rice, no beans
I handmade: a batch of soap – I thought about this a little
I mended/fixed: the loosen pieces on the little blue and white quilt – :{
I planted: vegetable garden plan – :{
I harvested: maybe some herbs – :{
I tried: ukulele lessons – :{
I read: The fifth wave I switched to The Living by Matt de la Peña – I did read The Living and will finish up Enchanted today
I made a great meal of: all vegetables – :{
I finally tackled: the treadle sewing machine The treadle is torn so I think I’ll work on the sock knitting board first – :{ and :{

Posted in 2016, Jan 2016 | Leave a comment

A Weekend in January

bakingThis weekend was a nice lazy one.  A little shopping (groceries), a little cleaning, a little cooking (creme fraiche, butter, yogurt, granola and pilaf), a little napping …….. I cleaned out a couple of cabinets in the kitchen.  I started some sourdough and when I tried to get something out of the cupboard with the baking pans I noticed it had become a bit of a mess.  I decided to get rid of a few extra item …. and now the cupboards looks much nicer.

 

 

Posted in 2016, Jan 2016, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Preparing for Emergencies – Lighting

We are in pretty good shape for emergency lighting.  We lost our power on New Year’s Day, a few times.  When I woke up at 5am it was really dark, really dark.  I snuck downstairs to turn on a few battery candles so the boys spending the night didn’t trip over anything.  They were great, just the right amount of light – enough to see, but not too much to sleep.  It got me thinking about how ready we are / aren’t in case of these short term emergencies……..let’s start with light.

IMG_1280We have several flashlights, a couple of battery lanterns, and some electric candles.  We need to find some better batteries and look for a good way to store them.

 

 

 

antique oil lamps

antique oil lamps

We also have 4 antique kerosene lamps and a bunch of regular candles in addition to a lot of supplies for making more candles. In addition, all of the boys have head lamps from camping.

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20 Weeks of Food Storage – Week 2 – Sauce

This week $15.00 – – – Total spent $15.00

This was one of those weeks that I decided to start bulking up the pantry for emergencies, went to the grocery for one thing, and found a great deal on something different.  I went looking for beans or rice but the grocery was clearing out some pasta sauce – marked down from $3.94 to $1.00 each.  We went ahead and bought 15 jars for the pantry.

sauce

Posted in 2016, Food Storage on a Budget, Food Storage Plan, Jan 2016, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Forgotten Skills – sourdough and butter

This afternoon I started a new sourdough culture, signed up for an online bagel class and cultured a quart of cream for butter……

I was gifted a dry San Francisco sourdough starter from a very nice man that lives near-by.  Today I combined it with 1 cup of warm spring water (85 degrees) and 1 cup of Bob’s Red Mill All-Purpose Flour.  I put it into a warm place (85 to 90 degrees – bottom drawer of a dresser that sits over a heat vent) for four hours. At the end of 4 hours I took off 1/2 cup of the mixture, which was doing nothing, and added another 1/4 cup of flour and 1/4 cup of warm water.  Now it’s back in the drawer, tucked in for the night.

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I finished up this evening by culturing a quart of cream with a creme fraiche culture to thicken it up for butter making tomorrow.  I just heated up the cream to 86 degrees, dissolved in the culture and now it’s resting on the counter until morning.IMG_1291

I also signed up for an online Bake the Best Bagels course on Udemy.  It’s taught by Teresa Greenway and was on a flash sale for $9.99.  It looks like it will be a lot of fun.Screen Shot 2016-01-09 at 9.49.26 PM

 

Posted in 2016, Food Projects, Jan 2016 | Leave a comment

Make-Ahead Scottish Oatmeal

IMG_1263Make on Sunday night and store in the refrigerator.  Just add a little water to reheat in the microwave, add some toppings and go.

Ingredients

  • 3c Water
  • 0.5 t Salt
  • 1c Bob’s Red Mill Scottish Oatmeal
  • 0.5 t Cinnamon
  • 2 T Real Maple Syrup
  • 1 t Vanilla Extract
  • 0.5 c Dried Fruit

IMG_1261Directions

  1. Bring water and salt to a boil.
  2. Meanwhile mix dry oatmeal and cinnamon in a bowl.
  3. Whisk into boiling water (this oatmeal tends to clump).
  4. Reduce heat to low. Add Maple Syrup, vanilla and dried fruit.
  5. Cook for 10 minutes or until desired consistency is reached.

    Makes 3 servings

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January goals for 2016

A while back on a forum I belong to there was a monthly post with some of the things below. At the end of January I would like to be able to say……….
I baked: a great batch of scones
I preserved: my kiwi harvest
I tidied: the laundry room
I deep cleaned: the washer and dryer
I purged: the yarn I will not use
I stockpiled: rice and beans
I handmade: a batch of soap
I mended/fixed: the loosen pieces on the little blue and white quilt
I planted: me vegetable garden plan
I harvested: maybe some herbs
I tried: ukulele lessons
I read: The fifth wave I switched to The Living by Matt de la Peña
I made a great meal of: all vegetables
I finally tackled: the treadle sewing machine The treadle is torn so I think I’ll work on the sock knitting board first

Posted in 2016, Jan 2016 | Leave a comment

20 Weeks of Food Storage – Week 1 – Planning

I was popping around some blogs about preparing a food store and ran in to the WeeHavyn blog and her ideas about creating a food store, not for the end of times, but for a cushion against unforeseen happenings – house problems, unexpected bills, illnesses.

The basic idea is to make a list of items and amounts and, each week, to purchase and store those item.  I will also be using my store and replacing as need be.

I decided to use this week to take a look at what I already have in storage and figure out where my needs are.

We have quite a bitIMG_1254 of flour stored away in canning jars – white, whole wheat, pastry.  I dry canned and sealed it in the oven so it should be good for quite a while.  We have about 35 quarts in total.

 

We also have a number of pints of tomato sauce – it looks like about 23 pints

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My To Do List – from based on the article: 20 Items to Kick Start Your Food Storage Plan.

1.  20 pounds of Rice.
2.  20 pounds of Pinto Beans.
3.  20 cans of Vegetables.
4.  20 cans of Fruit.
5.  20 cans of Meat.
6.  4 pounds Oats.
7.  2 large jars of Peanut Butter.
8.  2 large jars of Tang or other powdered drink mix.
9.  5 pounds of Powdered Milk.
10.  5 pounds of Salt.
11.  10 pounds of Pancake Mix.
12.  2 pounds of Honey and 2 large jars of Jam.
13.  10 pounds of Pasta.
14.  10 cans or jars of Spaghetti Sauce.
15.  20 cans of Soup or Broth.
16.  1 large jug of Oil.
17.  Spices and Condiments.
18.  5 pounds of Coffee or 100 Tea Bags.
19. 2 large bags of Hard Candies.
20.  Mini LED Flashlight and Extra Batteries.

Posted in 2015, December 2015, Food Storage on a Budget, Food Storage Plan | Leave a comment

Our Julebord – 2015

We had a lovely lunch this Christmas, moving the time up to 2:00 to get everyone back on the road to home before the temperature dropped.
yuleboard3
The Julebord Menu

  • Sliced Ham with Assorted Cheeses (Provolone, Havarti, White Cheddar)
  • Beef and Barley Soup
  • Assorted Breads from Great Harvest Bakery
  • Assorted Mustards
  • Smoked Salmon
  • Brie with kiwi preserves
  • Lefse
  • Potato chips with assorted dips (Clam, Onion and Ranch)
  • Crudite’

cookiesDesserts

Beverages

  • Egg Nog
  • Apple Cider
  • Grape Juice
  • Blueberry Shiraz
  • Assorted Microbeers
Posted in 2015, Christmas Recipes, December 2015 | Leave a comment