Garden time… almost

This past week hubby and I were pretty busy. Hubby has been working for weeks to chop up a big tree we cut down for fire wood. We are trying to clean up the yard, get things shaped up in the chicken coop, planted a few flowers that have needed to be put in the ground for a while, and tilled the garden.

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The chickens have been kept out of the garden all winter and they were anxious to get in and peck around.

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They seemed to have a blast digging in the newly tilled dirt…

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And they helped me by turning and moving the dirt all around…Plus it is a hoot and a half to watch them freak out over the new space…

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Baxter wasn’t too impressed as he just laid around, half watching the chickens freak out, and mostly sleeping in the warm sun. (It was nice that day.)

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I can’t wait to put seeds into the ground and see them come up. Until then there is hay on the garden to keep the weeds from coming back that I worked so hard to pull and “weed out” 😉 . Hope you have a great weekend!

Happy Thanksgiving (Thankful day)

The USA celebrates Thanksgiving today… a day that originated when the pilgrims’ and the Indians put aside their differences to celebrate together and focus on the things they shared. Today I challenge us to focus on the positive, the good, and the things we have in common and to be grateful to celebrate those things.

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Today I am thankful for many things and am choosing to keep my focus and the focus on my life with what God has given me and how I can serve others, starting with my family 🙂

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Today I am grateful for:

  1. My salvation in Christ- without it I would be a lost soul
  2. My husband- the person I rely on and love to be with
  3. My dogs and kitty- my sanity in a crazy world who always love me and are good for a smile
  4. My church- where I grown and learn and can be around like souls
  5. My family- esp. my mom and step-dad who are always willing to help
  6. My chickens- you can’t beat fresh eggs and their funny antics
  7. My home- its a safe and warm place to be and I always can’t wait to be home
  8. My garden- I love to grow my own food, can it, and freeze it
  9. My job- I don’t like all of it but at least I have the ability to have one
  10. Music- if you choose right it can feed your soul, calm you spirit, and change your perspective

I could go on and on, but I must get back to family and Thanksgiving in my home 🙂 Hope your having a blessed day!

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Flowers and Gardens

While we were on our overnight anniversary trip we went to a botanical gardens.

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The outside path was lined with gardens with pretty flower spinners.

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It was a pretty place and a lot of indoor displays, more then I had seen in other gardens like this.

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Some had things in them.

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Other’s were mostly flowers.

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The had ones for kids. (you know I loved the one with the chicken 😉 )

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Many of them had glass sculptures in them.

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One was in a desert…

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And the glass looked like a sun.

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It was neat what someone can do with glass.

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I love to look at flowers and find it very interesting how someone can create something so beautiful with different flowers.

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And they were all beautiful.

Dinner and a Lot of Work

Between thunder and lightening storms with lots of wind and torrential rain I tried to get a lot done inside. I got a lot more of the house organized, cleaned, etc. and then made a FREE dinner (well almost). I had a bunch of stuff from my garden and my mom and step-father’s garden. I was trying to figure out what to do with them for dinner and it came to me… a frittata 🙂

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This one I made by sautéing onions from my garden with peppers from mom’s garden in a large cast iron skillet. Then I added in some garlic (free still because my mom shared some she had excess of). Then I added in squash and zucchini from mom’s garden and kale from my garden. Sautéed this till it was all tender. Then I added 18 scrambled eggs from our chickens and seasoned it with salt and pepper. Then I put goat cheese I had left over from another meal on top and it went into a 375* oven for 20 minutes until the eggs were set. I served it with a few spring onions and tomatoes from the garden on top. Delicious 🙂

This is before I added the spring onions or tomatoes I kind of forgot to get a picture of that... silly me ;)

This is before I added the spring onions or tomatoes I kind of forgot to get a picture of that… silly me 😉

In the mean time I put some peanut oil in a deep cast iron skillet and cut up two green tomatoes I had fairly thin. Then I coated them in a rice flour/ corn meal mixture I seasoned with salt, pepper, onion powder, and garlic powder (these things I always have on hand, but yes the only other things I had that were store “bought”) I let them sit while the oil got hot (about 350*) and then fried them till they started to brown about 2-3 at a time so the oil will stay hot enough. I turned them a couple times so they would brown evenly. Once fried I put them on a plate lined with a paper towel and then sprinkled them with a little extra sea salt.

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This meal came out great and hubby was surprised he enjoyed it so very much. He is usually a meat and potatoes guy 😉 You can make the frittata with any garden vegetables you have on hand and can add meat like ham or bacon (those would be delicious). You can also use a variety of cheeses. I hope you can make your own summer frittata and enjoy a little taste of summer in your home 🙂

 

 

Here came the sun… and now rain…

We finally had a beautiful day last Monday. It was sunny, got up to 60*, and the wind had finally calmed. The warmer air and sun dried up a little of the flood of rain and snow we had for the week before that. We went out finally to run some errands and were amazed at the flooded fields, streams, and properties we came across. While out we took the dogs for a little hike, their first of the year, and they just had a blast.

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Once home we cleaned out the chicken coop, picked up all the downed sticks, branches, and cleaned up the downed trees around the property. We were able to burn them and get the piles cleaned up that way. We tilled the garden and even planted some of the early spring vegetables. I hope they do well as I am looking forward to my garden to start producing again 🙂 Yah for a spring day 🙂

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Unfortunately, today just a week later we are having a lot of cold rain. We got out a little in the rain to work on the fence as we are adding to the top of the fence to try to keep the chickens in better. They are wandering out of the area we went them, we have clipped their wings, so we are going with plan 2 now. Hope your Monday is sunny and bright. Have a great week 🙂

 

 

Parrots of God

There is this place in Tennessee that is called Parrott Mountain. It’s way up on this mountain and the drive up is a little scary, but the trip is worth it. This whole park has rescued parrots and other types of birds in it. Parrotts

It was really cool as you could feed some of the parrots out of your hand…OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

There were all colors…OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA Yellow…OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA Red…OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Even in white…OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Big and small…Parrott lorne feed

You could even feed them out of these little nectar cups…OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA  The nectar was warm and the little birds just loved it. We also got our photo with the birds all over us. This is the guy who put the birds on us… OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

All the birds on him ended up on us… our arms, hands, and shoulders. We bought a photo with the birds all over us, as 100% of the proceeds went to taking care of the birds. There also were all kinds of little parrots that were so cute… Parott multi

They had some interesting birds…ParottThe really cool thing about this place was there were mentions of God and Jesus all around this place in statues…TN Trip Sept 2013 184

rocks with Bible verses…TN Trip Sept 2013 185

and pretty water features…TN Trip Sept 2013 181

God was every where in this bird sanctuary. CrossIt was my favorite thing we did… horseback riding through the Smokey Mountain National Park almost tied it for first 😉 .

Summer Ending? Or Not?

Summer is coming to an end… you would never know that by the heat the last couple of days. Today was so hot and humid that even the rain didn’t help… it only made it more humid. All these weather changes have upset my head and it let me know with a nice headache tuned migraine today. The pups have enjoyed being inside and out of the heat. Bax n chase yellow flowerThe other day when it was a little cooler we were out for a walk and they let me get their photo in front some black eyed susan’s we found. They are such good sports humoring their mom 😉 I just love my boys 🙂

Adventures in preserving food…

What a nice weather weekend…Gerber

I got a lot done including some canning… today it was ketchup. A couple of weekends ago it was yellow tomato salsa…OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

I have already given a couple of jars away to family who have been visiting and wanted to raid my stash… OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

I have also been making batches of tomato sauce to freeze. I start with a bunch of tomatoes’ washed…OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Then cooked with all sorts of yummy seasoning and veggies…OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Then pure it till smooth, put it in freezer containers, and into the downstairs freezer for the winter 🙂 I also canned some tomatoes diced and whole for my stash 🙂OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

I am hoping this year I have enough to last all winter… I hate taking out the last jar too early 😦 In the garden, I still have tomatoes, peppers, and a few green beans growing, so I hope to keep stocking my freezer and caning shelves 🙂

Garden Goodies

My garden is in full bloom right now. I planted a little later then others in my area so as their gardens are dying, mine is still giving me lots of good stuff 🙂 This is what I have gotten so far this week…Garden goodies

I have already canned 17 pints of diced tomatoes, three of cherry tomatoes, 15 jars of yellow tomato salsa, and frozen quite a few quarts of tomato sauce made from our tomatoes, onions, peppers, etc. I also have baked some more gluten free bread for myself…Bread

It is a simple recipe and my bread maker makes things so much easier 🙂 It also makes the bread taste better when you make it yourself. And the lovely aroma in the house of fresh baked bread can not be beat 🙂 It makes you just relax and take a deep breath…. yummmmmm 🙂

Purple Cones of Summer

It was another lovely perfect day and I was off all day to enjoy it for a change 🙂 Hubby and I got so much more done today and even had time to take the dogs for a walk. The summer flowers are out and were showing their faces today. Purple ConesThe purple cones are in full bloom here and I think they are just so pretty. They were perfect photo subjects today 🙂Purple Cones 2 They seemed to love this weather even though they haven’t had rain. After a long day working outside I did some more canning (cherry preserves and tomatoes tonight). I am happy to be in canning season again… I just love to fill my pantry and basement shelves with all sorts of goodies for the winter. Full pantry = happy family 🙂

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